Falling back

“When we set the clocks back an hour last night, we told ourselves we were changing time, taking back that hour we spent for longer evenings last April. But the sun rose unchanged this morning, on its own schedule, and the only change was in the position of the hands on those ticking machines by which man meters his own life. We adjusted our own gauge of the hours somehwat closer to the reality of night and day, the sun, the earth and the year.

Time has its own dimensions, and neither the sun nor the clock can emcompass them all. All we can do with the astronomical absolutes of time is note them, divide them as we please, and live by them in our daily routines. Beyond that, our own emotions, our hopes and fears, our worry and our relief, shape not only our days but our hours with only casual regard for absolute or arbitrary time. The busy day can be brief, the suspenseful hour endless. Who can prove, by any clock ever devised, that time on occasion does not stand still? The interval between heartbeats can be a terrifying eternity, and the pause between two spoken words can shape the dimensions of all our tomorrows.

Time is all around us, the time of the hills, the time of the tides, the lifetime of a man or a tree or an insect. We participate in time, try to shape it to our own necessities; but when we change the clocks we aren’t changing time at all. We are playing with figures on a dial that denotes but cannot alter the flow of forever.” – Hal Borland, Sundial of the Seasons

Is everyone feeling as mixed up as I am today? I woke up to a clock that said 11:00 and was pleased that I hadn’t slept all of this blistery Sunday morning away, after all it was actually only 10:00. Stepping into the kitchen and pouring my coffee I was perplexed to see the clock said it was 12:15. Hmmm… the computer and vcr both said 11:15 so my husband must have set some of the clocks back while I slept. Now as I type it’s 6:30 and full dark. All day I’ve felt behind in my routine, but the clock tells me it’s early, there’s still time. So it will be lighter in the morning for a while, but dark so early at the end of the workday. This change is easier for me to adjust to, for some reason, compared with the spring, when I feel cheated of time and groggy for days until I’m used to getting up an hour earlier.

12 thoughts on “Falling back”

  1. I too adjust better to the fall change than spring – but the doggies and bunnies are the opposite – I got lots of glares today because they all felt I was late with breakfast 🙂

  2. My nurse daughter worked a 13 hour shift last night. She says the night shift doldrums are at 2AM, and they go through that hour twice in the fall. She obviously prefers the spring change.

  3. I love the quote!

    I tend to go around out of sync with clock time. Spring Ahead or Fall Back makes little difference to me, except that one of them gives me an extra hour, which is nice! 🙂

  4. I force myself NOT to get out of whack when we Fall Back. My DH feels the need to inform us all that “It’s really 6:00 o’clock” and it makes me crazy.
    Just set the clocks and get on with your life, Geoff!

  5. Naturewoman: I hate that it’s dark so early, but at least it’s light in the morning for a while.

    Michele: Yes! Everyone here was looking for dinner early!

    Bodysoulspirit: Can’t imagine working at 2 am – never mind twice in one day!

    Bunnygirl: The extra hour is nice, but I don’t like the dark so early!

    Susan: I do that too – thinking, “I don’t need to go to bed, it’s only really midnight” – that’s how I get in trouble in the morning!

  6. It definitely makes for a weird day, especially since I remember to change some clocks sooner than others. When I was at the Arboretum this morning I had the bus schedule mixed up because I thought it was an hour later than it really was.

  7. My g/f and I were out running errands all day and then tried to catch a 5:00 movie. We forgot to change the clock in the car and ended up getting to the theater an hour early!

  8. It will take awhile for me to adjust to the time change. I’m still trying to get used to being back here in the east after more than a month out west. I’ve spent October in the west a few times now and it always seems to take forever to get back on track.

  9. My husband says, “Oh, why do you fuss about something you can’t control?” I fuss a great deal when the days become short and I dread “Fall Back” every year. Here in Charlotte, the sun is beginning to set at 5:30 right now and completely dark by 6:15. This change gives me the opportunity to stay inside and get much done, but I long for “outside” and daylight. I heard that in 2007, Daylight Savings will begin sometime in March and end in November. Sounds great to me!

  10. John: It’s kind of nice being surprised with the *extra* time though, isn’t it?

    Patrick: Ha! More time for eating popcorn. What did you see?

    Bev: I can’t imagine how hard it must be to get back to a routine after being away from home for so long – never mind with the time change between zones and then the end of DST. I’d suggest lots of naps!

    Mary: Hi! I like the later start in the morning because I’m such a night owl, but do miss seeing the sun for so many months. It gets very dreary going to work and coming home in the dark.

    I’d read about the change for 2007 – to save energy they say. Did you know that they did away with DST for two years at some point? Funny how we play with time.

  11. Daylight saving never personally bothered me. Time is abstract anyway. The clock is just a means of regulating our days.
    Although I had a friend who ALWAYS grouched about it.

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