Standard Earth Time

I am blessed to live in a low mountain valley in the heart of Colorado’s spectacular mountains near Vail. One of my greatest pleasures is living with the rhythms of nature and keeping time by the sun. The days are very short in the winter, but I have the company of bald eagles that winter here, escaping Alaska’s long, frigid winter.

As spring lengthens the days I track with great excitement noting just which tree the sun arrives behind on the mountain to the east. I notice how we gain five extra minutes in one day as the sun makes its entrance in a notch on the ridgeline. Each day of spring adds more warmth, more daylight as the earth travels around the sun. It’s a rhythm I can mark by the light on the ridge and by the expanding energy of the earth and my own body. Before long many of the eagles will answer their rhythm and return to Alaska. The sun will make its journey to its apex, June 21, when it comes to its final Northern destination just beyond my favorite pinon snag on the skyline.

As I watched a bald eagle soaring there yesterday, I found myself smiling at the folly of man. Somewhere, someone decided that I will have an extra hour of daylight now. This makes me laugh because I will continue to measure my day by the sun on my mountain. It knows no arbitrary man-laws. Nor does the bald eagle, as it pursues its hunt on nature’s schedule guided by shadows and light as they change each day. And I will continue to live my life on Standard Earth Time. Sunrises, shadows, light and all.

By Rosie Sherwood, empowered woman and Colorado rancher for more than 45 years. She says of her rugged life, “…and I’d do it all over again!”

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