Yesterday I took a bike ride, and got home almost before I left.
How can this be? Did I suddenly attain some kind of cycling super-power? Have I trained so hard that I can now exceed the speed of light? Or was there a rift in the spacetime continuum? (Not that I know what that means, but it sounds really cool.)
The answer is not that exciting, I'm afraid. Yesterday was clock-setting-back day here in the US; to be more precise, the end of Daylight Saving Time. In short, it was the day the government kindly gave back the hour they took from us in the spring.
I have a long-standing beef with Daylight Saving Time. Why do we keep up this ludicrous custom? No amount of clock-fiddling can increase or decrease the available hours of daylight. Why torture our circadian rhythms every spring and fall by pretending it's later or earlier than it is? Why mess up train, plane, work, and meal schedules everywhere with the spurious idea that 2 o'clock is the new 3 o'clock? (Or vice versa.)
The spring time change is bad enough, but for those of us in northerly climes, the fall time change might be even worse. Think of it: every year we get through a long, dark, cold winter on the hope of the lengthening days to come. We revel in those few short months of summer warmth and summer light, when the sun seems to stay awake as long as we do.
Then September comes, and with it a faint uneasiness. The mornings get chilly and dark, making it harder to get out of bed. Sunset creeps ever closer to dinner-time. But the days are still warm enough to fool us into thinking that summer isn't quite over, so we foolishly head outdoors for a little evening gardening, having forgotten that twilight now falls at 6 o'clock (or what we've been tricked into thinking is 6 o'clock). Meanwhile the mosquitoes, who haven't yet quite died off, laugh quietly and sharpen their stingers....
And then BAM! It's November. The false dream of DST ends; suddenly it's dark at 4 in the afternoon. How cruel is that?
Since Mr. M and I must (as law-abiding citizens) play these foolish games with time, we like to make the most of it. In spring, when we're more or less forced to yield to the inevitable, we set our clocks forward with a sigh on Saturday night, and make do with a nap on Sunday afternoon.
But in fall, we're a little more rebellious. We've done without that hour for months, and now that we're finally getting it back, by golly we're going to spend it on something we enjoy. So we wait until Sunday to reset our clocks, meanwhile revelling in the luxurious feeling of knowing we've got a whole (albeit mythical) hour to use, and a whole day to use it in, any way we like. (Saturday-night church is a great help in this regard, as it spares us the necessity to be anywhere "on time" Sunday morning.)
So I used my extra hour for yesterday's bike ride - and that is how I was able to get home almost before I left. It's probably the closest I'll ever get to real time travel.
Here are some of the things I saw on my ride....
Scarlet leaves against a grey-and-green wood:
My own long shadow stretching eastwards:
Sandhill cranes, flying from the cold to come:
A leaf-edged road stretching into November:
Tallulah performing feats of balance on a dry oak leaf:
And trees contemplating their own svelte and elegant autumn reflections:
What did you do with your extra hour? (Or what would you do, if you had one?)
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