The crack of dawn

YEARS AGO I would get out of bed between 5 and 6 a.m. Often I would have thought of something to write here on The Moon. But even if I didn’t, I would wake up early.

It’s said that you require less sleep as you age, 5 hours or so instead of 7 or 8. I was living the stereotype. But that changed a few months ago, and now I sleep in till 7 a.m. I don’t know why. The Savings Time switch didn’t help matters. I don’t want to rise in the dark.

It’s getting dimly light by 7. If I wake before then, say 6:30, I just lie there and listen to the sounds. Dogs, chickens, birds, the occasional burro.

They all wake with me, my morning amigos.

One thing I do not listen to is my child bride who makes absolutely no sound whatsoever while she sleeps. It’s quite strange, like I’m lying beside a corpse.

Since it’s May, the bedroom window is wide open. When we hit the hay around 10:30, it’s stuffy, so I turn on the tower fan, which is a very nice fan. It’s got a timer, and turns off around 2 a.m., which is when the atmosphere changes, starts to get cooler.

We first encountered a tower fan in a hotel eight or more years ago in Valle del Bravo where we overnighted during a detour driving to Mexico City. It’s a popular getaway spot for Mexico City residents. We’d never been there. We left the next day unimpressed.

The best thing we took away from Valle del Bravo was the memory of that tower fan. We finally bought one a year ago.

The view through our bedroom window is lovely at dawn, the plants and shadows combined with the animal sounds get the day off to a great start. And, of course, waking to a new day is desirable at my age, not guaranteed.

While my child bride sleeps like a corpse next to me, I don’t want her to have a real one next to her on any morning, but that will happen one day, I suppose.

But it did not happen today.

Instead of a corpse, she’ll have a croissant. And so will I.

24 thoughts on “The crack of dawn

  1. After living in the same house for 58 years, I moved a year ago. A short block behind me is a power pole with a maze of loose wires: cable, phone, power, supplying about 6 or 7 houses. One morning very early, it had a very different appearance in the early light. Pardon the comparison, but it reminds me of Mexico! I thought I should get a photograph of it with that back light. I would be aiming east, so I have to do it before sunrise. In the winter it is too cold to be up that early. And now I would have to get up too early, so still no picture Maybe after reading today’s blog, I’ll be inspired to it one of these days. Phil


    1. Phil: Rising before dawn to take a picture, especially if I had to leave the house, well, that wouldn’t happen. I suspect you’ll never do it either. Some things are best just thought about.

      Must have been strange leaving a house after 58 years. The longest I’ve lived in one home is where I am now, 16 years. The previous record was 10 years in Jacksonville, Florida, from the age of 7 to 17. Most of my adult life before moving to Mexico was spent hopping about quite a bit.


  2. I had to laugh out loud at the comparison of sleeping next to La Guapa Señora to lying next to a corpse. An unexpected shock indeed.


    Kim G
    Redding, CA
    Where I snore, but don’t move around much while sleeping.


    1. Kim: La Guapa Señora indeed. I have not referred to her in that way in about a decade.

      Tidbit: The blogger, now deceased (R.I.P.), known as John Calypso stole that expression and used it for his wife for a long time. He never paid a peso in royalties either.


  3. I’ve heard too that oldsters need less sleep but that seems counterintuitive.
    As a courtesy to your young bride, please try to kick the bucket while standing up or watching TV. Waking up next to a dead old coot is really unpleasant for the surviving spouse. It’s happened here in San Miguel as has the phenomenon of dying while sitting on the can, also bad form, except for the deceased who doesn’t really care. LOL


  4. Felipe: I see ads and things on TV about people who don’t get enough sleep. I go to bed at 12:30-1:00. I wake up anytime from 7:00-9:00. The reason I stay up so late is because otherwise I would wake up too early. Then I fart around for a few hours. I have to make an effort to do anything useful before 11.

    Like you, I was nomadic in my youth. I have now lived in this area, in two dwellings, for 12 years, the longest time in my life. We would like to move to a warmer clime, but indecision and laziness get in the way.


    1. Kris: I’ve never had a sleeping problem with the exception of brief spells during which I was very worried about something. Everything gets magnified at night. My recent chickenpox scare was one of those times.

      I get most useful things done before 11 a.m. It’s the afternoons that I laze away.

      You want to move to warmer weather? I wanted to move to cooler weather, which is what I did when I moved to Mexico. Very comfy now.


  5. If the superannuated sleep fewer hours at night, it’s because they nap during the day. I go to sleep around 11-12PM. I get up at 5AM because that’s when the dogs believe they should go outside and then be fed. After they eat (hubs never participates in the feeding), we go back to bed and that’s when I get my best sleep, about 5:30AM until full daylight.


      1. I had published an additional comment explaining my error, but I must have forgotten to hit the “post comment” button.

        My comment was erroneously placed. I thought I was responding to your earlier post that ended: “Life moves along for better or worse, usually better.” Thus, “better” it is. That seems to be the theme of several of your writings yesterday. I suspect you claim to be far more pessimistic than you are. I merely think of you as a realist.


        1. Señor Cotton: Now it makes sense! But you’re not in the bottle again, are you? Dear me, I hope not.

          As for being a realist, yes, which is tantamount to being a pessimist these days, I think. This is the end of days.


              1. I second that motion, Felipe and Steve. After a couple of drinks, a lot of people think they’re more witty and entertaining, but the opposite is true.


                1. Señor Lanier: And I was one of those people for years. However, I usually hung out with others with the same problem, so it all equaled out. Being sober, 24 hours a day, is vastly better than the contrary. Life improves spectacularly.


  6. After so many years of getting up early, this old forester can’t sleep-in. I don’t even use an alarm clock unless I have an early morning appointment, and even then I usually awaken before it chimes.

    Still, there are much worse things to wake up to than the shadows and sounds of dawn .


    1. Ray: By nature, I am a morning person. My newspaper career (such as it was) almost always required me to work evenings. I usually got home between midnight and 1 a.m., so I slept till 9 or 10. On retiring in 1999, I immediately flipped back to what my body preferred, getting up early. The transition was seamless.


  7. Felipe,

    One of the best parts of my retirement thus far has been the elimination of the alarm clock. Every day I wake up just as the sky outside my window begins to lighten and the birds begin to chirp. This morning that occurred at 6:54 am. I usually turn out the light at around 11:30 pm so my body must need about 7 1/2 of sleep each night.

    Unfortunately, I do not have a near corpse lying next to me. Mi esposa has had four sinus surgeries and snores, no, she SNORES! If I can fall asleep before her, no problem. If not, ugh!



    1. Troy: One of the many joys of my newspaper career was that, due to working at night, I went decades without hearing an alarm clock. Another was that I never had to wear a tie.

      As for snoring, I’m told that I snore (I remain skeptical), so my wife uses silicone earplugs for nice nights of snooze.

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