It's dark out early in the twilight zone.

I hurried home from work, changed into some walk-out clothes, leashed up the dogs, and struck out with Sarah to try to at least break a mild sweat before supper.  About 2/3 of the way through the usual route, Sarah reminded me that we needed to turn back so we wouldn’t end up stranded in the dark a quarter or half mile from home.  So we cut the walk short and beat it to the house, arriving right before the descent of twilight.  After supper, I looked at the clock: a few minutes after 6:00.  I looked outside: plumb dark.  How cruel!

During the long “daze” of summer, 6:00 was time for supper, followed by a long bike ride or an episode of brisk yard work.  We rarely went in before 8:00.  Now, it’s not even 7:15 and I’m sitting  before the keyboard with the dark of night streaming through the blinds, trying to stretch out the evening until it’s time to take a shower before AC 360 when it comes on at 9:00.  I don’t think I can stretch out a shower for 45 minutes: I’d shrivel up.

Obviously, writing this post provides the time-killing remedy for this evening.  But I don’t know what I’ll do tomorrow, or the weeks after, or the months after, for that matter.

But truly, this dark feeling of emptiness  is perennial.  I endure this adjustment every year.  To get by from night to night, we come up with a variety of needs, some real and some imagined, for an excuse to  grocery shop or run an errand–any mission to escape the home-binding twilight.

The early dark was easier to manage last night because Monday Night Football provided a distraction.  Tonight, there’s nothing.  Nothing but darkness.  And me stranded in this twilight zone, longing for the light of day.

Where, oh where art thou, merry March?  Thrust aside the chilling winter,  hie thee hence this way, restore the evening light of day!

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