Wednesday, November 20, 2013

172. No Alarm Clock

Last Thursday, for the first time in close to 8 months, I woke up to an alarm clock.

I rolled over and smacked ineffectually at my phone for a while, hoping that it would simply go away. It did not. My sleep-intoxicated brain simply could not comprehend what the devil was happening. Was this another whippoorwill, here to perch in a tree directly above my head, making whippoorwill sounds until the break of dawn? I attempted to use the same defense I had used against loud birds on trail, and made a series of growly angry bear sounds.

My phone was not impressed.

Eventually I came to my senses and finally understood. Rather, Dumptruck woke up, grabbed me by the shoulders and shook me gently until I stopped sounding like Smoky the Bear being presented with a cake stacked with burning candles. I blinked my eyes open and groaned. This was nothing like the trail.

However, it has been colder than 20 degrees in the mornings, and our house has decided that we're going to hold out as long as possible to turn on the heat. We don't want to have to pay for the oil until the very last minute. So as I threw the blankets off of me, I was blasted with aggressively frigid air. All the hairs on my body stood on end in a completely useless display of attempting to make my body warmer.

Aaah, I sighed inwardly, that's more like the trail.

I began working very soon after the end of the trail, but my schedule up until recently has only been in the afternoons. This has been wonderful for my desire to sleep all the time, play with my cats and watch The Price is Right. Some people fear aging. I fear only for the soul of Drew Carey, as he tries and fails every single day to be Bob Barker. Meanwhile, I embrace living like an octogenarian and know that when I do get old, it's going to be its own excellent adventure. And one day I'm going to win a showcase showdown even if it kills me.

However, the schedule has changed, and now I have finally made the return to normal career living. This means that I have to learn to be one with the alarm clock. It does not respond to abuse. I ask the alarm clock to wake me up. It obliges, in spite of my monster-growling protestations. It's only doing its job.

Can you even imagine what it would be like to live for 6 months, waking up whenever your body wants you to wake up? Do you know what its like to never have to be startled awake before you want to, unless it's because there is a large, angry mammal somewhere close by preparing to eat you? Have you ever wanted to be able to forget the sound of your alarm clock?

Out in the woods, you couldn't wake up to an alarm clock even if you wanted to because- Wait. Nevermind. NO ONE WANTS TO WAKE TO AN ALARM CLOCK. You wake up when the sun comes up. You go to sleep when the sun goes down. There is no such thing as consequences for sleeping late. The worst thing that will happen is that you'll get a reputation among all of your hiking friends for being a completely lazy lump.

And it's fine, because you've got nowhere to go, and all day to get there.

Clever Girl

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