Amber Evening

Amber-Evening-1 Last night was one of those rare nights that I’m sure we’ve all experienced living in North Iowa. Just before sunset, due to the particles in the air and likely a very thin cloud cover, for only about 5 to 10 minutes, the sun cast an amber glow everywhere. It made one think he was in some sort of surrealistic world. It was so distinct last night, I felt as though I had crawled into one of those futuristic movies where everything had a cast of amber. What used to be in vogue some years ago were amber sunglasses. I had a pair of them but I didn’t care for the “feeling” that I was looking at something that wasn’t real. When seeing the glow of amber last night, I remember a movie that I watched some years ago called “City of Ember”. It was quite interesting and centered around a group of people who lived underground for well over 100 years to escape the ravages of the world above. It was an underground society that survived for generations living their whole lives under man made lighting.

For years it was believed that the amber room which was part of the summer palace in St Petersburg Russia which contained large panels of amber that covered the walls of the room had been stolen or destroyed during WWII. Most recently they discovered the panels hidden within the walls. I can imagine what the room would look like when fully lighted with all reflections of amber all around the room. Amber is really not a stone, but rather petrified tree sap. The Baltic countries seem to have the greatest abundance of it and was considered precious and used in trading for other goods and services back many hundreds of years ago. I’ve seen some of the jewelry created from amber and it really is quite attractive. People must be careful not to confuse the man made amber for the real thing. I viewed a piece of amber once that had a long extinct ant trapped inside. Seems during the pre-historic periods, even the bugs were huge.

I have suggested at times for people to use amber colored lamp shades in areas of their homes where the wish to have subdued and restful lighting. Reading rooms and dens are great places for amber lamps. The shadows that are cast seem to invoke restful thoughts and a bit of escape from the weights of job and family. I do hope we soon have another amber evening before summer is over.


Joe Chodur

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