Happy February 29th!
Because our calendar contains 365 whole days and our solar year is 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes and 47 seconds, we add a day every four years to synchronize with the seasons. We make an additional tweak to our calendar at 100-year turn-of-the-century marks by only leaping in 400-year increments. Thus we didn’t add a day in the year 1900 but did in 2000 and won’t again at a turn-of-the-century year until 2400.
The word ‘leap’ refers to the advance in days from one year to the next. Christmas Day 2014 was a Thursday. In 2015, it was on Friday. This year, Christmas will advance two days, that is, it will ‘leap’ to Sunday.
Being born on February 29th can cause problems. When do you celebrate your birthday on non-leap years? What if drop down menus or applications don’t offer a February 29th option? Headaches but not insurmountable, I imagine.
In Crafting the Personal Essay, Dinty W. Moore writes about leaping by establishing a regular writing routine regardless of good or bad days. “…you are going to have bad days, or stretches of bad days, where nothing that you write seems good enough,” he states. But, “…sitting in your chair, struggling through the gobbledygook that comes out of your brain on one of those bad days, is still a productive effort…” Good days will happen, and then you will leap.
“I’ve had weeks where I accomplish five days work in one day, after four days of hemming and hawing and pushing my pencil back and forth. Writing is a mysterious process. All you can do is open yourself to the possibilities, be willing to work, and get at it.”
Every morning, I start my day with coffee, prayer, email, headline news and writing. I sit in my chair and watch sunlight illuminate the Blue Ridge Mountains, unless obstructed by fog or clouds. The view of the Three Ridges Wildness Area is spectacular even in dull light like today. But last week when I looked up, the color leaped into red for just a few moments.
Note: This month, my husband leaped into blogging: https://keithkennyblog.wordpress.com