- Abby Franquemont
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I seem to have become mired in an early-rising sleep pattern, about which I have mixed feelings. On the one hand, I could parrot back what my late father always used to say about being the first one up in the morning:
“I like being the first one up. Nobody else is up for a while and I’ve got the whole world to myself, and then I get to get the whole house up and running and get everything moving and that makes everybody’s day start off better.”
I used to argue with him that I much preferred the time to myself when it was late at night, and everyone else was asleep. But just maybe the mornings are growing on me. You know, just as long as there’s plenty of coffee. I see his point — when you’ve got the morning chores all taken care of and the day well in hand before anyone else even starts stretching and yawning and cranking their eyelids apart by whatever means necessary, well, I guess you just feel like you’ve got a jump on the day, and whatever it brings is most likely well in hand. After all, you have time, and there’s nothing more precious than that.
My father, though, was always a morning person. Or so I believe; I wish I could ask him. There are plenty of stories he (and others) told me over the years, about things that happened to him due to usually being the first one up. Like meeting my mother on a dig on the coast of Peru (or at least, that’s when he remembers meeting her, though she remembers him from a prior anthropology class), or being the guy who finds the new litter of barn kittens born in the night, or knowing it’s a snow day before anybody has to go out to the end of the very long driveway in the pitch dark blustering chill of a New Hampshire winter morning to wait for the school bus that never comes.
Me, I dunno — I’ve long thought I could do without having to be the one to get up and stoke the fires that burned down in the night (of course, I haven’t had wood heat in my adult life), and I’ve always had this problem where if there are dishes in the sink in the morning, I get crabby and stay that way all day because the first thing I have to do is the dishes, for some pathological reason. But lately I haven’t minded any of that, and I’ve been unsuccessful at falling back asleep after early morning waking.
This morning, it brought me cool, crisp weather, not muggy or hot, slightly cloudy. And then in the distance I heard a thump or two. It could have been the cats up to their usual tricks (those tricks are often what wakes me early, as it happens), but it wasn’t. In moments I could tell it was thunder. With coffee brewing, I walked down to get the paper, and on the way back up, the first droplets of rain hit me. Looking to the west, I was treated to the kind of melodrama that only a sweeping sky can show; the kind of pending tantrum for which no wide-angle lens would be sufficient, and which you know you could never photograph anyway, because half of the drama is the smell in the air, the way everything feels when you can see rain sheeting down a mile or two off and coming your way, and the breeze on your skin turning into a full-on wind.
And to think it’s picture day today — the day when I photograph my week’s achievements and get ready to list my new inventory for sale. I guess it won’t be happening outdoors in full sunlight today, for the first time in rather a while! But that’s great news; we needed the rain badly. I hope it rains all day.
Driving Edward to YMCA camp in a lingering drizzle, I tried yet again to find a radio station with upbeat music and no morning show. Yesterday I listened to one local classic rock station for literally half an hour hoping they’d play a single song. No. Not a single song. All yapping. Yap, yap, yap. Might have been a few fart jokes in there. That’s it. And that’s what all the morning shows are like. So I got to thinking — am I seriously the only person who detests radio morning shows? Are these things really that popular? Do people find fart jokes and marginally veiled innuendo and nonsensical jabber about trivial celebrity news that enthralling first thing in the morning? And if so… why? Why wouldn’t you rather have tunes? I can see, you know, having quickie traffic reports and things like that; but I simply do not understand the appeal — especially in the morning — of the 2-person “Hey Bob, did you hear the one about the fat chick?” *insert canned noisemaker sound* “Why no Jack, tell me the one about the fat chick!” shows.
Then when I get back from the post office run and so forth, I’ll show you lots of pretty pictures.