I stepped from Plank to Plank
A slow and cautious way
The Stars about my Head I felt
About my feet the Sea.

I knew not but the next
Would be my final inch -
This gave me that precarious Gait
Some call Experience.

Emily Dickinson, c. 1864

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Missing an hour of sleep

Skydiving women at Safety Day
Yesterday I drove in the rain down to Snohomish, the first time I've gone there this year. Since there is no skydiving on Safety Day, it was fine for it to be raining. Last year it was sunny, and there was a lot of grumbling that we couldn't be outside playing in the sky, but were attending seminars instead. The Skydive Snohomish staff provide a really wonderful day for the skydivers, and after the layoff that most of us take over the winter, a refresher is in order. I needed to be put in a harness with handles to pull that simulate my own, be reminded about how to service my own gear in between their mandatory visits to the rigger every six months, and canopy control. I enjoyed myself, but I didn't stay for the dinner (provided by the owners), and instead drove back to Bellingham in a driving rainstorm.

 I am uncomfortable driving in the rain on a freeway, surrounded by cars traveling much faster than me. The windshield wipers were barely able to keep up with the rain. We've had much more rain in our part of the country than usual; I read somewhere that SeaTac (the airport south of Seattle) has set a record for the most rain in March, and we're still only a third of the way through the month.

Anyway, I made it home without incident.  It was good to be home after a long day, and I settled into my favorite chair to share my day with Smart Guy as I drank my much-needed glass of wine. It was a long day, and now I'm missing an hour of sleep because of this pesky Daylight Saving Time. If you cut a piece of fabric from one end of a blanket and sew it onto the other end, you wouldn't have a bigger blanket, now would you? And these days we only experience Standard Time for four months out of the year. Why do we do this? The clock says it's after 7:00am, but it isn't really, not according to my internal clock. It will take me a week to get accustomed to the time change. Do I sound like I'm grumbling about it? You would be right.

I finally went to the doctor about my infected finger. He drained it and gave me a topical antibiotic to apply to it, and it's now much, much better. There is only the residual damage and no new areas of pain or swelling. It was not until I went on my hike this past week with the Senior Trailblazers and Al thought it was taking way too long for it to heal that I finally agreed to see the doctor. I still think it would have gotten better on its own, but he was right: it was taking too long.

That's one thing that bothers me about getting older. I don't bounce back from things like I once did. Since I am one of those people who takes good health for granted, when I don't have it, or if I don't recover quickly from an illness or an injury, I think there's something wrong. And it's only that people tend to slow down in every aspect of life as the decades accumulate. It's normal, I tell myself, to take longer to heal. It's rather disconcerting, however, to be sidelined by a hangnail.

I have taken the advice of my commenters and stopped feeding the sweet kitty any milk. Now it's only dry food, which he seems to like, and a little treat once a day. He waits for me now. Yesterday after I got home from the Drop Zone, I went outside to fill his bowl, and there he was, with his welcoming meows and anxious to see what I might have brought him. He wouldn't let me pet him for long, but that was all right. He has his own life to live. I'll try to get a picture or two, so I can share him with you as well.

The robins have returned to the area and are everywhere. Now that is a true sign of spring, isn't it? Last Saturday when I was at Lake Padden, dozens of robins covered the grass and were busy pulling up any poor worms or other critters that emerged in the early morning light. Today I'll putter around my home and later, go to the YMCA to work out. I did nothing yesterday but sit in a chair, or sit in a car, so I'm anxious to get a sweat going. Funny how much I miss it when I don't have the chance to exercise. Now that is a good addiction to have, I think.

This post seems a little rambling, but it was hard to think about what to write this morning. My Sunday is marked by this activity, first thing, but since I was not at home yesterday, I didn't have a chance to ponder what I would write about. Sometimes it will come to me in the middle of the night, but that didn't happen last night. I was just tired and slept well. No periods of wakefulness when I reflect about my life, just blissful sleep. Except for that missing hour.

I do hope the coming week will bring you some good weather, some respite from winter at least (unless you're in the Southern Hemisphere and need respite from summer). Skydivers often sign off with my wish for you this week: blue skies! And fluffy white clouds, if that's what you like.


Teresa Evangeline said...

We are finally getting a much needed break from the oppressive cold. It feels so good. No robins yet, but they will return ... hope springs eternal.

Your kitty sounds like a sweet addition to life.

O-town Ramblings said...

We've had an unusual amount of rain here too, which is a good thing. A month ago we were facing certain drought conditions this summer. Now we're up to 98% snow pack and ahead of where we need to be for this time of year.

Hearing about you feeding a stray cat reminds me of my grandma. My grandpa doesn't like cats so she made do for her lack of one as a pet by always feeding strays.

Gigi said...

I'm glad to hear your finger is getting better! It's always the little things that sideline us, isn't it?

I've been hearing the birds chirping - despite the ice & snow we experienced last week - and it gives me hope that Spring is indeed on it's way!

Elephant's Child said...

I am also very glad to hear your finger is getting better. I am often very frustrated at the recalcitrance of my body. (And mind, if it comes to that.)
We are still in daylight saving time - and I cannot wait for it to finish. And allow me to get up in the light again.
Have a great week.

Linda Reeder said...

I have not heard much bird song yet, and I am eager for it! As for DST, I do like the longer evenings. I hope to get out for a second, short after dinner walk now that it will be light. I slept badly last night so the missed hour was OK with me, one less hour to have to get through. I really used to be affected by the spring time change when I was working, but now it doesn't matter much.
I guess others mentioned that cats shouldn't have milk, and I know this, but it is still counter intuitive to me having grown up on a small farm where the barn cats got milk fresh from the cow every day. Of course I don't think they lived all that long either.
As to the freeway driving in the rain, it is the worst - all that white spray off the pavement making it so hard to see. I'm glad you are safe, and healing!
As you know, healing is what I'm all about right now. I have had to learn to go in slow motion, and I feel like a slug much of the time, so I have to look for small pleasures. There will be a walk this afternoon in what looks like partial sunshine! That's a good thing! maybe there will be robins!

Rian said...

I too don't like driving in the rain on a highway. They say that people don't know how to drive in ice and snow... well, I don't think they know how to drive in *rain* either.

As for the cats and milk, having worked in a cat specialty clinic for years, I know that some cats don't tolerate milk/cream. However... 2 of my inside cats cry for it daily and almost all the outside ones crave it. We don't give much.. just a few teaspoonfuls each, but they do love it.
Glad you had a good Safety Day!

Arkansas Patti said...

I am glad you saw the doc and I am sure he has sped up the healing and kept it from becoming something serious. You are right, we don't bounce back like we once did. Drat.
A lone robin showed up this week and walked around on the hard snow like he was really ticked off. Pretty sure he tried farther south for I haven't seen him since.

Linda Myers said...

I'm looking forward to more light in the evening - I don't like it when I have to be home by 4 p.m. I wish my night vision was still intact.

Red said...

Safety must always be the key when it comes to flying or parachuting. The four months of standard time is a nuisance.the change doesn't bother me.
Look after those dang hangnails!

Heidrun Khokhar, KleinsteMotte said...

Time change is not and issue, never was. Driving in rain is often hypnotizing thanks to wipers and dancing rain drops.
Good that you let a doc fix the finger and I can understand how you'd want to heal as efficiently as in the past.
Blue skies would great if we had some warmth too,

Glenda Beall said...

I only realized tonight that I have to change my clocks. That is what I hate. I always forget one or two and then I get confused as to which ones are correct.
My body doesn't react to the time change and I suffer for a week or two trying to adjust to it.
Glad you got home safe in the rain and glad your finger is healing.
I have a cat and she is picky about her food. I went to buy her special choice tonight and found the grocery store has discontinued it. She won't be happy.

Rita said...

I have never liked DST and it becomes more annoying to me the older I get. I wish they would just abolish it altogether. I am also grumbling about it. ;)

I'm glad you had a good day and got home safely in that rainstorm. And that your finger is better, too. It was in the 40s today over here!! Spring feels like less of a dream. ;)

amanda said...

Glad you had that finger looked at, DJan!
Wow, that sounds like a lot of rain, and still so early in March to set a record.
It's been explained to me why they started it, but the reason is completely obsolete & non-effective anymore. My dad & my husband both have a horrible time adjusting to it. I don't like what it does to the kids, getting up and hour earlier for school. In all honesty, I think it's just dumb! Not many things I'll sum up to that. :)

Anonymous said...

Here in Hawaii, there is no time change, so the only time we take note is when we want to call long distance. Glad your finger has healed properly.

Anonymous said...

Nice to hear about your sky drive. We need to be very careful while driving in a crowd.Nice to hear that your finger is getting well.

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Oh yeah, that missing hour. It takes me at least a week to recover Glad to know I'm not the only one!

Haddock said...

Ha ha .... enjoyed that example of sewing a piece of blanket onto the other end. Yes there is a lot of confusion about the daylight saving.

Lorna said...

I wish I shared your addiction to activity! I would so much the better off.Ov course, now, with my scoliosis, it is hard to walk for pleasure, but then even when my back was straight I never enjoyed exercise.

About daylight saving: I like having the extra hour of daylight.

Far Side of Fifty said...

Good to hear about safety day, and that you are giving the kitty food and treats...shake that treat can and he will come running! I am anxious to see a photo! :)

Sally Wessely said...

I didn't think this was rambling. I thought it was newsy and interesting. There are so many good conversational topics here.

I'm glad you saw the doc. Any simple cut can become a major problem even for youth. I don't think your age made it heal more slowly. You, my dear, bounce back very quickly from much.

I hate driving in the rain too. I always fear hydroplaning.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I am definitely not a fan of driving in the rain on the freeway. I would much rather drive in the snow to be honest. At least people go slow in the snow!