Being in Alaska means I’m four hours behind the Eastern Time Zone where I usually live and work, so when it’s 6:38 a.m. here, people in Miami or New York are idly wondering what’s for lunch. It also means that my phone alarm will tell me at 1:00 a.m. in Alaska that the newspapers who have glomed onto my e-mail address are sending out e-mails with headlines of the morning edition. Fortunately I have set the phone not to make noise until 5:00 a.m. no matter what time zone I’m in.
Being four hours behind gives me time to brace myself for the news… or to ignore it, which I’ve mostly done while here in Valdez. I also have been really good about shutting out the media. Since I arrived in The Last Frontier, I haven’t turned on the TV in my motel rooms. And I do not miss it. I’ve also been doing a lot of walking. According to the pedometer in my phone, I’ve done about two miles a day since I got here. Not bad for someone who likes to drive. Then again, when you have the views you get around here, it’s nice to walk and take it all in.
Anyway, being four hours behind also lets me be at a distance from the rest of the country and even the world. Sometimes we need that.