Despite my portentous feelings on the topic, the winter solstice came on the breath of a warm breeze and seemed determined to charm us with the most beautiful spring-like day. For fun I went out at exactly noon and yes, the shadows cast by the pale sunlight were very long.
A lot of plants are dependent on adequate daylight to bloom, but not this primrose, bought for a dollar and plunked in a pot last year before being forgotten. The warm air and watery sunshine were enough to coax this spring plant into producing two small, imperfect, and probably ill-fated flowers.
The mild afternoon brought the bees out to mark the solstice too. I hoped they might find the primrose blossoms, but though not for lack of wishing on my part, they never did.