At 3:45pm today the sun slipped behind the mountains. It's not really dark at that time however we are losing about 7 minutes of daylight a day. More then that if you count how much time the sun is actually above the mountains. It's very noticeable. I find this time of year harder then winter. In winter there is snow and the reflectance of moonlight off of it. Now the trails are dark and invisible. My body wants to hibernate & I struggle my way out of my warm bed in the morning, clawing my way from the bottom of consciousness. I have little tricks I use to help me adjust to the darkness. I have a light star on a timer that goes on 15 minutes prior to my alarm. By the time my alarm goes off it has started to settle it's way into my subconscious, mimicking the rising of the sun giving off the false impression of warmth & heat.
This morning after my morning walk with the Disreputable Dog, during which I realized my layers were no longer suitable for the weather, I dug out the following necessary items from a box under my bed:
-down vests, down jackets, wool jackets
-my hats, each of a different thickness depending on the cold
-my ear band because no matter the hat it won't keep the cold air off the ears while bicycling in heavy duty wind
-my reflective suspenders for commuting
-my headlamps because it's easy to get stuck somewhere without light at this time of year
-quilted & flannel lined pants
-the 3 layered gloves
I'm ready now...the pockets of all of my coats contain headlamps and handkerchiefs and you will not find me anywhere in this state without a wool hat until May. Now the layer of skim ice on the ponds can freeze over and I will rejoice with my ice skates, the snow can come & I will rejoice with my skis.