|Fog, ferns, and stones|
I checked all the automatic clocks as soon as I woke, since if they don't move, it's time to change the batteries. They all made the change. I awoke on this night last year and realized it was almost time for the change, so I got out of bed and went into the living room at midnight. The clock's hands started moving fast, going forward, until they had traveled 11 hours. I wondered if the hands might move backwards, but of course they can't do that; they, like us, only travel one direction in time.
I have more trouble adjusting to having an extra hour in my day than losing an hour. I don't know why that is, other than the fact that I get up early and go to bed early. I can't be going to bed at 7:00pm, so I'll try to stay awake tonight. And my eyes popped open at 4:00am instead of 5:00 this morning. I tossed and turned and decided what the heck, I'll just get up and start my day.
Of course, my days don't start with me having to do anything other than fix myself a cup of tea, bring it into the bedroom, climb back into bed, open my laptop and start reading the news, blogs, and (on Sunday) write this post. In the summertime, I can hear the birds singing and there's light outside. But in the dark days of fall and winter, everything is quiet. Other than the faraway sound of the occasional train whistle, nothing is stirring at this time. I like it this way; it's my favorite time of every day. Around 6:00-ish, I'll get out of bed, dress, have breakfast and during the week, leave the house right after 7:00 to catch the bus into town.
The activity gives my days a structure that provides me with a great deal of satisfaction. I guess it all started with those years when I had a job and was required to be somewhere at a particular time. In those days, I woke at the same time and was at my desk before anyone else in the office, because that was the time I got the most work done. Once other people arrived and the phones started ringing, it was much harder to stay focused on the task at hand. I was usually working on at least one manuscript or gathering references, something like that. I just realized that I don't miss working one bit. Not that I didn't enjoy my job, but I have substituted other routines into my days, and it works just fine.
Nobody is keeping track of what I do with my days any more. I don't get a paycheck, and nobody is forcing me to catch the 7:22am bus. But it gives me pleasure, and I enjoy being a regular at the coffee shop, a regular in the gym class, and a regular on the bus. I suspect that everyone else at the bus stop on a dark rainy morning is going to work or class, not going somewhere because it gives their day a structure. By noon, I have returned home and will putter around, sit down with a good book, or climb in my car and run errands. By 4:00pm, it's time to have a glass of wine and start the evening part of my day. Somewhere during these days, I spend several hours talking with my partner or watching favorite TV shows together. He lives his life the way he wants, and I live mine, but we really enjoy our together times, too. It works out great, and we are both very grateful to have found each other. Sometimes I am amazed at how free of friction our life together is.
I do spend more time that I should with my electronics. I like being connected to the wider world, and I will read the blogs I follow and the news, a few editorials that I like, and (as always) the comics. I have one laptop window dedicated to them (Doonesbury, For Better or For Worse, Zits, Baby Blues, Pickles, and Monty), and once I've done everything else, I open that window and usually have a chuckle or two. That's the signal that it's time for me to close the laptop and move on to other things.
I suppose if I were to look closely at the way I structure my days, I might wonder if I should be spending time volunteering to an important cause, or perhaps making a difference in the world around me. The news sometimes causes me anxiety, because this world we live in needs people who are willing to make it a better place. I've got the ability but not the willingness. Am I wrong? Should I be living my life differently? Sometimes I really wonder about this.
Well, this day of falling back, rather than springing ahead, has become one of contemplating my daily life. I've done that today, using my extra hour to think about where I'm going and sharing it with some of my favorite people: my regular readers. That reminds me of one thing I haven't mentioned: writing blogs, especially this one, gives me so much satisfaction and a purpose to my days that I almost forgot to notice it! How I would miss it if it were not here. And how I would miss you if you were not here, either.
But you are, today. And so am I. Be well, give your loved ones a special little hug for me, and I'll see you here next Sunday, if all goes as planned.