Summer solstice is the longest day of the year. Strange, considering how there are twenty-four hours in every single day, three hundred and sixty-five days a year (except for Leap Years). Rather, summer solstice is the single day with the most sunlight – meaning, the sun will be starting to set after eight o’clock at night, keeping kids awake past their bedtime with how bright the light glimmers.
It also happens to be Summer’s birthday on June 21st. Perhaps her parents thought they were being clever when they chose her name and she was born on this day, and she can’t help but wonder if they would’ve named her Winter if she had instead been born on winter solstice (the answer is probably yes).
When most people hear her name, they think of a warm, friendly girl radiating sunshine and positivity with blonde hair and blue eyes who essentially encompasses her namesake’s season. Yet, in reality, Summer is dry, dreary, and overall has a pessimistic view on the world. Her least favorite season is in fact summer, and she prefers the cold. Winter probably would’ve been a better name for her, with her dark hair and darker eyes.
So, Summer really isn’t a fan of her birthday. Extended sunlight and celebrations highlighting the lengthened stay of the sun for this particular day are things she dislikes. Every year for her birthday, it’s like this. The irony is not lost on her, nor her parents who seemed to have thought that naming their child in this fashion on this day was a good idea.
Something she does like that is related to her name is the beach; though, perhaps the beach is phrasing it a bit kindly. It’s the ocean that she prefers, the brooding and foreboding waves that crash relentlessly into the grainy sand under the influence of the moon. It’s the romantic deep down inside her despite what she’ll admit, where taking long walks on the beach in the moonlight is healing through its beautiful isolation.
It’s after all the mediocrely thought through presents, store bought cake that somehow has her named incorrectly spelled (which seems exceedingly difficult to mess up), and a barrage of birthday wishes from people she hardly knows or barely talks to anymore, that she finds herself thankfully alone with her thoughts and the reassuring sounds of the waves that will continue for eternity.
Kicking off her sandals and removing her clothes piece by piece, she leaves them by a small sand dune. She wades into the water, shivering as goose bumps raise on her body alongside hard to see body hair. The sensation is chilling to the bone, and she takes it all in as it seeps into her oily skin.
She continues to wade further in, the water greeting her legs, then thighs, waist, stomach, chest, and neck with the ocean greedily lapping at her. It pushes and pulls her, dragging her along with its every whim at the command of the moon shining far above at the end of a long summer solstice.
With open eyes, Summer lets the sea swallow her and disappears into the waves.