From Pipi’s Pasture: Getting used to Daylight Saving Time
I like having more light in the evening, especially if I have to drive somewhere, so I enjoy that part of Daylight Saving Time. However, the change from winter time to Daylight Saving Time takes some getting used to — and that goes double when it comes to chores involving the cattle.
For example, my winter routine has been like this: Get up at 5 a.m., make coffee and crawl back into bed to enjoy the warmth of the covers while I listen to the sounds of the coffeemaker. Then, at 6 a.m., I get up again to feed the outdoor cats, pour a cup of coffee and take some meds while I wait for daylight so I can see to do chores (and avoid running into a skunk). At about 6:50 a.m., I head to the corral to start chores. When I’m finished, we feed the main herd of cattle — about 8:30 a.m.
That’s the morning routine during winter, and since we follow it consistently, the animals know what to expect — right down to the minutes.
So, when we have to change our schedule overnight, it takes some getting used to — for all involved. This year, for example, I woke up several times during the early morning hours, but when the red numbers on the clock read 5 a.m., I started wondering when I needed to get up. Five o’clock by “new time” was 4 a.m. “old time,” so I decided not to make coffee until 6 a.m.
But then, when to do chores? It was light enough to start them at 7 a.m. “old time,” but that makes it 8 a.m. “new time.” But that would make feeding time much later, and I have an away-from-home work schedule to keep.
If you think this sounds crazy, consider thinking about the time in the early-morning hours. As a matter of fact, even writing about it today, in the middle of the day, is making me dizzy.
So, I end up making coffee at 6 a.m. and going outdoors at 7:15. It’s a windy, cloudy
Morning, so it’s not really good light. The cows at the corral eye me suspiciously. They wonder why I’m out earlier than usual. After all, 7:15 a.m. “new time” is 6:15 a.m. “old time,” 45 minutes earlier than normal. Even a bottle calf hasn’t come out of her pen yet.
But, we all made it through the morning, and by today, we are starting to get into the groove. Now, if I can remember to change the time on my watch (the time on the car clock has remained the same since last Daylight Saving Time), I’ll be set until next fall, when we gain an hour and have to re-plan the schedule.
About a week ago I was rolling a bale of hay down past the loading dock of the corral so that I could throw hay over the fence. Right there in the path was some rhubarb. It isn’t that the rhubarb hadn’t been there before, but I thought it had died out during the drought. It isn’t easy to get water to that location. The rhubarb is nice and tender, and I’m determined to use it up before the stalks get tough. So I hunted up my rhubarb recipes.