Grumpy Morning Faces.

Wednesday October 2, 2013

I rather like mornings. Especially mornings at the moment, early October, when the air is crisp with the first promise of autumn, but at 7am it is still warm enough not to need a coat.

I really like mornings when my daughter and I leave the house for the bus stop so she can catch the 7.20am bus to school. She is eleven now, and goes to the senior school twenty miles away.

That fifteen minute walk - just so long as we have left on time and it is not a ten minute run - gives us just time enough to have a little non-pressured conversation: a mother/daughter space with no agenda. I really, really like that.

But as we stand at the bus stop, with a steady stream of cars passing us on the way into the local town, I can see that not everyone likes mornings as much as I do. Car after car after car passes us with just one occupant, a grumpy person at the wheel. This morning I counted eighty seven cars. Out of that eighty seven, I counted just three people who did not look grim. One person was even smiling; perhaps Chris Evans on the radio had said something funny; he usually does.

And it occurred to me that human beings were not designed to travel like that, in our little sardine cans, with just the radio for company. I don't think it was a co-incidence that the two other non-grumps were among the seven cars with more than one occupant.

Having someone there (and really there, not just listening to their ipod) helps us communicate with, not just that person, but the world. Walking in the fresh air (or cycling) lifts our spirits and gets those endorphins buzzing.

When I get back to the house after seeing my daughter onto the bus I feel energised and ready for work.

I wonder if there is any practical way more people can walk or cycle in the mornings, or even just car-share for the company (and it saves money too).

Of course, the frost and snow and wind and rain have not arrived to lower my spirits yet. So I'll let you know in February, if I still love mornings.

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