Welcome to Eastern Standard Time. One would think that with an extra hour of sleep, one would be bright eyed and bushy tailed. Not so. Even though we avoided the usual lets-see-how-late-we-could-stay-up-because-there-is-an-extra-hour stupidity, Sunday was a lazy, lazy day.
It's November, the month of Thanksgiving. The family of five turkeys that had spent much of their mornings in our backyard has disappeared. Smart. Even though we wouldn't harm them, for many reasons, some of our neighbors might see them as an escape from having to pay two or three bucks a pound at the supermarket.
Usually, the silly season is defined as the few weeks leading up to an election. Not so in New Haven. There is voting on Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2009, but it's not really an election. There are two or three wards, out of 30, in which there is a real contest. The race for mayor is a joke, with three independent, ill-financed, undefined candidates vying for second place against a longtime mayor running a professional, well-financed campaign.
The mayor has spent money sending flyers and four-color printed post cards many times. I guess he has money and many good reasons to spend it, mostly because legally he has to. (By the way, keeping with the usual practice of commenting on issues on which I report for the New Haven Independent, there will be no endorsements for political office.)
The silly season around here has to do with driving, walking, biking and other forms of locomotion.
Last Friday, I was stuck behind a left-turning car at a light on a major city road. The car turned just as the yellow light appeared, so I decided to sit and wait for the next green light. Count five seconds or so, a car goes through the light, now red. Count five or six more seconds, and another car goes through the intersection, followed closely by another. By the way, I shouldn't say car -- two of the three were SUVs.
For reasons passing understanding, once the weather starts to turn and the Thanksgiving - to - New Year's season is upon us, people start driving as if the other cars on the road were apparitions placed there for their amusement.
People act crazy. I'll bet that if you could see into their cars, you would see them, eyes glazed and teeth clenched. I don't get it. This is supposed to be the season for good will toward all people, not get out your will, you'll need it.
Friend wife and I took a couple of days off last week and traveled to Old Cape Cod. We have loved the cape since before we were married, nearly 38 years ago, but mostly go to the Outer Cape -- Eastham and north.
This time, we went to Falmouth, a picturesque town on the upper cape, which means the southern part of the cape.
There is a beautiful, 10-plus mile bike trail called the Shining Sea Trail that goes from Woods Hole, a one-industry (marine research) village to North Falmouth. It's flat, paved, off-road and a joy to ride. Last Monday was a perfect day for bike riding -- cool, a bit of a breeze, clear but not severe clear.
We chatted with a few fellow riders, some of whom were our age or older. There seemed to be a more relaxed atmosphere than on the Cape Cod Rail Trail, the 26-mile plus trail that leads from Dennis into Wellfleet. I don't know if it's the season, the place or just dumb luck, but we had a ball riding and chatting.
Falmouth is a more concentrated place than say, Eastham, which really doesn't have a downtown. It's an easy-walking town, although the tourist-agency maps tell you to stay off the main streets if you are biking. Good idea.
While we were walking along, past a large and well-maintained school and library complex, we came upon a lake. It was an hour before sunset, the light was perfect, and we stopped to take some photos of the lake. We saw this duck couple, one male and one female, having dinner.
They didn't seem to mind that we were taping their dinner feeding, so enjoy.
I think it mirrors people -- it doesn't matter how many times you have to go in circles, the objects is to get that morsel for which you are vying. Take that any way you wish.
Have a great week. And even if it is a ridiculously uncontested election, get out and vote. It'll keep you in the habit for when it does count.
Until next time...