I'm a morning person. I love mornings … always have. Here in South Africa, where there's no Daylight Savings Time, morning still comes especially early although it's edging a few minutes later and later each day as winter approaches. I usually wake around 0500-0530 with the morning light. I climb into the cockpit and take a look around. If I'm lucky, the sky glows with pink and orange and purple and reflects off the water.
I appreciate the quiet of the morning. I remember when our kids were little, I'd rise especially early just to have a few minutes of “me” time with my morning coffee, before the kids got up and the frenzy of a new day began. Now, I still appreciate “me” time in the morning when the marina is quiet and calm. David sleeps in a little later. No workers are around. The water is flat calm (sometimes). There's not even the lap of water against the hull. The birds are waking up, but they're even quiet this early. The cooing of the doves, the screech of the ibis and the honking Egyptian geese don't start till a bit later. I've got the day all to myself and I relish it. Of course, at the end of the day I'm ready for bed by 9pm. David is a night person and enjoys his “me” time then.
It's a good time to write, plan my day and just daydream. I sometimes wander down the dock with my camera. The city is just waking up. It's this time of day that photographers call the magic hour or the golden hour, when the light is soft and perfect.
On a totally different topic, today is the beginning of the Chinese New Year … the Year of the Sheep. Last year we celebrated the Year of the Horse in Adelaide's Chinatown, watching parades, traditional lion dances and eating Chinese sweets. The Year of the Sheep is not considered a particularly lucky year to be born. Sheep symbolize “caring and compassion … (but) many are afraid those born under the sheep will prove too weak for a cruel, unforgiving world.”
Unfortunately, Durban does not seem to have a specific area known as Chinatown and I could find no celebrations to attend. We'll just have Chinese food aboard, I guess, and count sheep before we fall asleep.