23 September 2011

23 September - Autumn Equinox; Ember Day

Astronomy: Equinox at 5:05 a.m. (Eastern Daylight Time)
Weather:  Ember Day: The weather today foretells the weather of November.

The first three days of any season rule the weather for that season.

As the wind and weather at the equinoxes, so they will be for the next three months.

If the weather is quiet for the week before the autumn equinox and the week after, the temperature will continue higher than usual into the winter.   [okay, so far it has been quiet the week before; let's see how we do after]

As the equinoctial storms clear, so will all storms clear for the next six months.

Winds that blow in the daytime near the equinox generally hush towards evening.

Today is the Equinox of September, which for the northern hemisphere means that we have slipped from summer into fall.  The days and nights are roughly equal for the next few days, but increasingly, the nights will be getting longer.  Already, we have an hour less daylight than at the beginning of the month, and the mornings here have been deliciously cool.

For the lands of the Southern Cross, it is the opposite.  They are leaving winter behind for spring, and their days are increasing in length.

And so it goes.  Here the leaves will turn and become glorious splotches of color.  Soon the signs will go up at the farms selling apples, the cranberries will be floating in their bogs waiting for the harvest, and pumpkins will show up on front porches everywhere.  The old man who sells huge bags of potatoes and onions will take up his accustomed pitch on Wood Street, and I will be down there to get my winter's supply.  The summer produce has been canned or frozen; now it is time for the fruits and vegetables of Fall.

You can read more about the equinox at EarthSky.  The nights are clear now, but not uncomfortable, and sky-watching is enjoyable.  This is a good time to point out the constellations to the kids.