The day the sun didn't rise
It had been an unseasonably hot day and it was still uncomfortably warm in bed at 2 am.The duvet cover lay on the floor where I had kicked it off. There were a lot of animal noises, a donkey brayed, the camels made grumpy sounds and dogs where barking. The barking seemed to go on for hours but it wasn't urgent barking it was back and forward across the valley a shouted conversation full of questions? I lay there a long time trying to get comfortable trying to get back to sleep. Some one got up to go to the toilet. A cat appeared in the bed room, it must have been there all along, it wasn't my cat and this wasn't my house so I didn't know if it belonged but it made itself comfortable on the bed. I lay there wishing I could get back to sleep and thinking how tired I would be in the morning. I went to the toilet since my bladder was convinced it was morning then got a drink of water even though I wasn't thirsty and it involved going down stairs to the kitchen.
The dogs did stop barking but I remained stubbornly awake. The curtains were thin and would let through the light but it was still dark out side. Time pass slowly I closed my eyes and tried to think of nothing. That didn't work so I let my mind wander. That didn't work. I practised slow rhythmic deep breathing. That didn't work. I didn't have my watch so I kept looking at my I pad for the time. Cocks crowed but the sky remained dark. Suddenly the silence was broken by the loud rhythmic chanting of the early morning call to prayer.
I fell asleep. When I awoke it was still dark. Eight am I put the tv on for the news. Breaking news the world wakes up to darkness. Panic and bewilderment this morning as the sun did not rise, the world remained in darkness. Pictures across the country and from around the world showed night time continuing. People were waking up to pitch black darkness, it was like a winters morning only it was summer and warm. The obvious question was being asked , "what 's happened?" It was clear from the range of views that no one as yet knew. The Internet was alive with conspiracies, from a massive nuclear disaster in North Korea, to a chain of volcanos erupting in the South Pacific, to some massive cosmic event, like a huge comet blocking out the sun. We were told the sun was still there we just could't see it. The moon was still there but with out the reflected light from the sun we couldn't see it. The weather didn't change. It didn't suddenly become cold. There were no tsunami or earth quakes reported. Everyone was told just to carry on as normally for a Tuesday morning and most people did.
Some people thought it was the end of the world but most people thought it just very puzzling. The next question was what happens if the sun doesn't return, can life still exist? Not surprisingly expert opinion was divided.
Which is why on Wednesday morning every TV set and radio on the planet was focused on the most easterly part of North Island New Zealand looking to the horizon waiting to see if the sun would rise.