Topping off at nine hours and just under 35 minutes, today is the shortest day of the year in Palo Alto, the winter solstice.
Once associated with festivals and ceremonies, the day passes largely uncelebrated in Palo Alto, where relatively warm winters, ample sunlight and plenty of electricity lessens the season's toll.
The solstice marks the day the Northern hemisphere is tilted the farthest away from the sun, although ironically, the Earth is closer to the sun than in July. The North Pole plunges into darkness, while the South Pole is illuminated in constant sunshine.
The sun sets Friday at 4:54 p.m.; Saturday's sunset is at 4:55 p.m. with a sunrise at 7:20 a.m.
In June, Palo Alto's days extend 14 hours and 44 minutes.
By Dec. 31, Palo Altans will see a whopping nine hours and nearly 38 minutes of sun, unless, of course, it rains.