Saturday, 29 October 2011

Summer time? Again?

The last time we experimented with Summer time or lack of it was during my first winter as a single mum. I had two children to get to school and I also taught. Getting up in the dark and getting us all off to school was a nightmare. It felt highly unnatural to pull the children from deep sleep and tell them it was time to go to school!
My car was the main  problem. It was a very ancient Wolsley,  built like a tank with red leather bucket seats and a starting handle. It simply refused to start  most mornings during that winter of ice and snow and I became adept at taking out the plugs, and fiddling with the carburettor...but try doing that in the dark!
I did try starting it with the handle on several desperate occasions but each time it felt like I'd broken my arm in the process. It was a very old car. There were no MOT tests on those days and it was all I could afford.
There was a garage nearby for really desperate times but they were expensive and I was very hard up.  During those dark days I had to sometimes make a choice as to whether to buy it much needed new tyres or feed my children. Times were hard and not helped by the experiment with time.
Most people I knew hated it even though the lighter evenings were a bonus.
If they go through with it this time it will be interesting to see if the mantle of age makes it more acceptable.


  1. I sometimes think I need a starting handle first thing, particularly on dark mornings. For me, i think, just leave it alone. Stay on permanent GMT. After all, the rest of the world calculates its time from GMT. Why not just be British about it and say GMT and nothing else.

    I remember the former experiment in time, but I was living in Europe (Belguim) so it didn't really effect me, unless returning to the UK on Holiday. It got quite confusing, especially when booking ferries etc on the Continent and translating the correct time for the return journey.

    There's a suggestion that we should adopt Central European Time (CET) to bring us into line with most of Europe, but that still requires clock adjustments twice a year. So, I can't see any sense in it.

  2. From a purely selfish point of view I will welcome the clocks going back this evening.
    An early riser all my life, I have nevertheless
    found the recent very dark mornings almost impossible and have been waking - I don't use an alarm clock - later each day.
    To have a bit of light to get up to will be most welcome and the dark afternoons will worry me not at all as I seldom go out in the evening.
    To leave the clocks alone and go along with GMT without Summertime alterations makes perfect sense to me.