Land of No Evenings

On the equator, there is no evening. Reading more of Jeffrey Tayler’s Facing the Congo, I learned that in these stiffling, mosquito-filled areas, night just shuts down. There is no drifting, no slow descent to darkness. The lights virtually go off at 6 pm. The book chronicles the passage down the mighty and fearsome Congo River, by dug out canoe. Tayler provides some evocative details.

“The sun falls promptly at six, and rises at six; every equatorial day, a coin flipping now light, now dark, with a band of fifteen minutes of resplendent dawn or lustrous dusk in between. The sunsets in particular have no equal elsewhere on the planet; in their sudden meltdown of molten hues, in their drama and Gotterdammerung magnificence, they conjure up ancient feelings, making us tremble at the demise of the day as if it were the death of our world.”