White Dog did a double-take, as she listened to the church bells sounding the hour. She nudged YoYoMa who bumped Puff who brushed against Nuka...and they all came charging into the office where Quinn and I were working.
"Is this the end of the world?" AWD blurted. I looked up distracted and TOWD jumped up to join the pack crowding around me, all of them anxious and protective. "Why ever would you think that?" I asked and reached out to stroke ears and necks and chins in reassurance.
YoYo pushed his way to the front. "It is the middle of the afternoon and already it is dark as beddy-bye walk time!" "Yeah, it is raining but when it touches me it feels like I am getting hit by ice!" Nuka finished.
"I want dad to come home!" Puff wailed. "If the world is ending we should all be together."
"Relax everyone." I said. "I don't think this is the end of the world. Yesterday was the end of daylight savings time so we turned the clocks back an hour. Didn't it seem lighter when dad got up this morning?" I got a few nods and shrugs from TOWD and YAWD, our sleep late former CA boyz. "well, the other part of standard time is that it gets dark earlier in the evening..."
"It is NOT evening, it is 4pm!" WD protested. "And it looks like 10pm!" "Believe me, I hate this too. It makes me feel tired earlier in the night and I get all confused because all of the natural light signals are wrong. You know this is a hard time of year for me to paint and it is because of just this."
"Well, it is stupid!" White Dog pronounced and the WDA wagged its agreement. "Why do humans INSIST on messing with things that are best just left to nature? Clocks should reflect what is going on in the day's cycle, not arbitrarily ticking away some random interval. Tell the people in charge to stop right away and put things back to normal!" There were howls of approval so strong that I feared the beginning of an "Occupy the Clock Tower" protest.
"As for the sleet, Nuka," I said. "Today is very cold and if we look there is snow on the mountains. I bet the foothils here in town even got a dusting. Here in the valley we aren't cold enough for the rain to turn completely to snow so we get little ice crystals mixed in the water...that is what you feel hitting you. Doesn't have anything to do with the darkness, just the crummy cold weather."
"Dark extra early, damp cold, and getting hit by ice," WD summarized. "Is there any wonder no one likes Mondays?"
REMINDER FROM THE ESKIE COUNTDOWN CLOCK
The Third Annual Worldwide Moment is 11:00pm GMT on November 14th...SEVEN days from today. In our time zone (Mountain Time) The Worldwide Moment occurs at 4pm.