Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Dark Morning

Each morning, as the year’s dark side encroaches on the start of the day, I see and hear fewer birds as I take my 6:00 a.m. walk. This morning I was down to three species: crows, a cardinal and the eastern pewee. I notice the change most on Monday mornings, as on the weekend I usually sleep half an hour later than on work days. Soon, the only bird I hear will be the hoot of an owl, as the pewees will head south and even the crows and the cardinals won’t be awake.

This Monday, when I first left the cabin, I nearly turned around to retrieve a headlamp, but after I stood with Dog for a moment or two, my eyes adjusted enough that I thought I could do without it for another day, at least. But I know the headlamp is only a day or two away from necessity. At first, I will only need it until I emerge from the canopy of the forest. Once I have open sky above me, even nearly black open sky, I will be able to see my way for the walk. But that is only a temporary respite. When we return to standard time, I might be able to forego it again, briefly. When the leaves fall and open the forest to the sky’s light, I might have another respite. But respite is all these temporary adjustments will bring. The night is closing in.


ChicagoLady said...

Thinking about pitch dark mornings getting ready for work makes me not eager for winter to arrive. Despite that, I will still enjoy the changing seasons, the snow falling to cover the ground, the glare of the sunshine off the snow blinding me as I drive to work.

Carolyn H said...

Chicagolady: I like winter, generally. I don't like ice storms. But if I could change just one thing about winter, it would be the short days. By the end of winter I am starting to feel like a vampire. Perhaps if I didn't have to work all day, I wouldn't mind them. Instead, it's dark when I leave the house and dark when I get home, and that kind of limits what I can see on my walks.

Carolyn H.