first 'summer' in England was spent at boarding school. It was cold
windy and very green, much as it is here in Kentucky on this day in April.
At school, the young ones were sent to bed at six thirty
and the lights were out by seven PM. The older ones, the twelve year
olds, were in bed by seven thirty and their lights were out by eight
PM. Made some sense in wintertime when it was dark and usually
raining by four PM, but in June, when ten PM was still dusk, it made no
I would lie there in broad daylight,
listening to bird song, wondering why we weren't at least allowed to read. The others
appeared to be able to sleep when told to. But I was an outsider,
and generally better for outsiders to assimilate, otherwise no-one is
I recall the History teacher hinting at something called "double
daylight saving time," institutionalized during the Second World
War. This effectively meant that for wartime children it would have
still been dusk at midnight.
respect to daylight savings time, I was assured that it had to do with
wellbeing and to save on electric bills, rather then a form of ritualistic
sadism. As well the old saw, "early to bed, early to
rise," with its dubious rewards, was sadly introduced into my
School masters in the 'summer'
used to tell me to cheer-up. The reality of course, I was just exhausted
and always cold in the 'summer' uniform, and this, even when the sun was