#122 When Darkness Comes

When darkness comes.

After the time change in November the already fading daylight quickens leaving most all of us complaining about the onslaught of night long before we are ready, as early as 3:30 in the afternoon in the farther north regions of the lower forty eight.

What’s less often mentioned is the early beginning of daylight. I find myself restlessly awakening at 5 or even 4 a.m. as first light shows in the sky above the Atlantic Ocean. The house is cold at this hour, reflecting the deep chill seeping through the walls and windows. It’s far too early to rise from the bed, far too early to crank up the heat. It’s so much cheaper and more energy efficient to confine the heating to the bed itself, to stay tucked and toasty in that tiny space for as long as possible. Staying in bed of course is possible in retirement, when not only do I not have to go to work but I also can set appointments for later in the day.

You’d think that staying tucked under the covers would be delightful but the truth is that the situation involves tight cocooning, the air is so chilled an arm attempting to hold a book or an iPhone means a really cold appendage.

Restless under the covers I watch the light play among whatever clouds are on the horizon, first in black and grays, and as the sun nears the horizon the first color begins to show, the intensity of it most dramatic in the earliest stages of rising. Sometimes in that early darkness the lights of a boat headed out to sea resembles an illuminated ball without detail. How cold is it out there moving across the water?

Almost every morning seascape is a vast horizontal painting, a 180 degree view, but the thought of warm feet hitting the icy floor keeps me watching wrapped in blankets. The camera sits on the desk neglected and chilled.

One thought on “#122 When Darkness Comes

  1. I completely understand how you feel as I too awake at this early hour but have no choice but to rise and head for the bathroom. Probably the fourth time during the night. Do I get up, make my list
    of things to do for the day or stay still, turn on a CD and try to go back to sleep. Rarely do I go back to
    sleep but for the sake of the household I go back to bed, hoping my grandson does not come creeping
    in before his allowed time to get up which is 6 a.m. I have been told to send him back to bed before that time. He will eat through three bowls of cereal, two pieces of toast and a glass of milk if I allow
    him to enter my room. The cat starts her routine scratching on the door from the living room and
    wants to be fed, then the dog comes from my son’s room wanting to be let out to go to the bathroom.
    It is a never ending process of things that starts the day. I think I miss the morning light more than the early nights. The sunrise is beautiful, light creeping across the tops of the trees, this a.m. it was
    bright red like in the summer. So often it is the only time of day you see the sun because the clouds
    come in and block it out for most of the day.


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