Of spring and spring forward

31 Mar

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(The following little story happened to a friend of mine. This is my attempt to let her know that life is like that)

Date: March 25, 2012.

Time: 6.30 a.m.

Place: a little town in a not so little European country.

I turn in bed, reluctant to get up. Yawn. Eyes hardly open. Stretch. Must I really go through this superhuman effort to get my body in the vertical position? Then I remember: the plane. The plane to the capital, and the plane from the capital to my beloved African country. I must catch that plane, and consequently, I must get up. Kicking the beddings off my body, I place my legs on the cold floor. My head slowly looking downwards and hands on my hips, just to get my balance. Another yawn, and stretch. 6.45 a.m. I must get moving, otherwise the plane will be lost.

9.20 a.m. finds me already at the airport heading towards the counter to check in. Being a Sunday morning, there are not too many people around. I take my time, as I know there will be no queues. As it is a local flight, 40 minutes are more than enough to do the necessary. The lady smiles as I approach. I smile back. I hand her my ticket after acknowledging her greeting. She glances at it, then at me. I smile. Then her face changes abruptly.

“Signorina, your plane left an hour ago!” she exclaims

There must be a mistake. I look at my watch: 9.25 a.m. My plane is scheduled to leave at 10.00 a.m., I try to explain. There can be no doubt about it. But the lady shakes her head and insists that my plane has left. This is becoming too much. Incomprehensible. A colleague of hers comes to the rescue. After hearing the whole story, she also shakes her head. The plane has left. What could have happened?

Then light dawns. It is the spring forward, they explain. We changed time yesterday, that is why you have lost the plane as you did not change your time.

Gosh! It is bewildering. I did not change the time on my watch. I did not know that everyone agrees to change the time on their watch the same day each year. I was one hour behind everyone else. I have lost my flight, no, my flights. I am too dazed to reply. Since it is my fault, I must buy the tickets again. I hastily do the reservations for the possible flight out of here and to the capital and to my country. Homesickness hits me like a Saharian heat wave.

Much as I love the flowers in spring, I think that spring forwards are horrible, especially if they make you miss your flight!

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