Close The Door, It's Freezing!
The Sun, like an angry king, occupies centre stage in our Solar System with glorious pomp. Gigantic flares periodically gush outwards from its massive diameter of 1 392 684 km comprising hydrogen and helium. Even this majestic ball of fire isn't stationery, but moves within the Milky Way.
At various distances planets dance in orbits around the sun. Mercury and Venus are the closest and bear the brunt of its nuclear fury. But they are not the subject of our attention for now.
At about 150 000 km, the Third Rock from the Sun, we find an awesome planet called Earth. Graced with continents, oceans and an atmosphere Mother Earth is home to life in all its glory. This jewel of a planet is 190 times smaller than the sun and races through the darkness of space at the lightning speed of 30 km per second. This is fast enough to go around the world in seven minutes or to the moon in four hours. Enough to make you want to grab onto something for safety, but we are blissfully unaware of this.
Light takes 8 minutes 19 seconds from the sun to reach the earth, bathing us in energy that supports almost all life here and affects our climate and weather patterns. With all this warmth showering down on our lovely planet why are we freezing our butts off here in South Africa at the moment? Because our spaceship (Earth) is tilted at 23.4⁰ we are getting a smaller share of sun bathing during this season called winter. In addition to that winds have carried icy temperatures from snow on our mountains to various parts of our country driving temperatures below freezing point at night – brrrrrr.
All we can do is follow the heat as the sun moves around our home during the day. At night we cuddle under whatever warms us up. The cold is not for me. I have never considered climbing Mt Everest because there you can encounter temperatures of over 40 degrees below freezing point and winds of 120 km/h. If you laugh too much your tooth fillings fall out and it’s so blooming cold some climbers loose fingers and noses (yes it’s true).
What this cold does is make me appreciate the sun and planet earth. I am thankful for what I have and look forward to Spring-time. Maybe I'll try some brain fitness exercises right where I am sitting. That way I won't get too cold because I will be busy doing something useful keeping brain fit - http://www.neuro-link.org/web/