By Joe Rector

Can you feel that new excitement? Are you being flooded with a new energy that’s lain dormant for many months? Is a new pep in your step noticeable to everyone? If you’re like me, all of these things are true because Daylight Savings Time arrived this past Sunday.

I’ve always been a morning person. Mother would come to our bedroom door and wake me with instructions to get my grumpy brother out of the bed as well. No, I didn’t arrive at high school on time, but that wasn’t because I hadn’t been up for hours. Jim was a bit slow moving in the a.m., and we were called on the carpet when Mother had been advised that we’d been late to school on at least a dozen occasions.

In college, I took early classes and tried to be finished with all of them by noon. I then returned to my dorm room and fell into the bed for a nap. Then I’d study for a while, visit my brother Dal and his wife Brenda, watch Johnny Carson, and return for more study time.

Even during my working years, I was an early bird. I arrived at school usually about an hour early. Sometimes, I’d finish up a set of essays or copy tests for classes. Most of the time, however, was spent knocking around with friends on the staff.

The part-time jobs I worked in the last few years all required I be on hand at 7:00 a.m., and the mowing I do at a local golf course demands I am there by 6:00 a.m. I don’t mind it though; I finish work and then have the rest of the day to myself.

This DST helps me to get more things done. Although I give out quicker than I used to, I can still finish mowing the yard, complete with weed eating, by early afternoon. Pressure washing the house, deck, and porch are done before lunch.

During warm weather, I appreciate DST because it offers us much more time to sit around the pool. On plenty of days, Amy and I move poolside early in the afternoon and stay there until dark or biting bugs run us in. Nothing is more relaxing than sitting in a pool at 10 p.m. as the last of daylight passes.

After a bleak winter, DST signals that brighter days are just ahead. The gray skies and rain-soaked yards disappear. They are replaced with long, bright days that lift spirits. That will be especially true this year after fighting a pandemic for more than a year. An added bonus will be sharing that extended sunlight with friends with whom we can sit and share food, laughter, and fellowship.

I’m in a much better mood these days. The COVID-19 vaccinations have a great deal to do with that. In addition, nature is taking on a new look with new buds and flowers and critters. I love them all, with the exception of the rabbits that drive our poor dog Sadie to the brink of insanity. It’s important for us all to have extra sunlight time to finish jobs or just have some time with families outside. After the past month of dealing with a deadly pandemic, we all deserve a little extra outside time. I am one person who would urge our elected officials to vote to keep Daylight Savings Time year-round.