Monday, November 3, 2008

Sleepy Willow

I feel this should be the name of our city these days. I do not recall any sleep fairy dust being blown into our air, or sleepy potion slipped into our water supply. There have been no Snowhite-type poisoned apples in circulation, and no hypnotizing Pied Pipers have been observed around town. And yet, we have been overcome by the slumbers, the ‘soporifs’… we are all very sleepy at rather early hours.

The last thing we remember before this happened was the changing of the clocks. We marked the arrival of autumn-winter by turning our clock back one hour. This has certainly helped the likes of me wake up more easily at it is now no longer pitch dark when my first alarm goes off. However, not unlike pulling the bed sheet from one end, this has also meant that it gets dark much earlier in the day. I always get distracted by the prospect of gaining an hour and forget that an early sunset will also be part and parcel. More so this year as winter arrived early and the euphoria of living a week or two in transitory weather (and hence more sun) was washed away with a series of rain storms.

So we now start getting sleepy because we’re waking up earlier, because it’s dark sooner, and because as the third dark hour passes after a 4pm sunset, our brain remains programmed that it must now be late and systems more or less start to shut down. You may not find any of this sufficiently convincing, but I tried to sell the sleep fairy dust theory and it didn’t fly…

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