I don’t know how many of you are familiar with the C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia but one of my favorite characters is Pudddleglum the marsh-wiggle from Silver Chair. Marsh-wiggles are a fictional group of people that are known for their webbed feet and gloomy personalities who live in wigwams in the marshes of Narnia. Puddleglum is the very embodiment of a pessimist but a hero none the less. One of his character traits is his need for sunshine. As the characters in the story voyage further underground Puddleglum feels as if he is being suffocated for lack of sunlight and fresh air. It is this trait that I share with him.
I have noticed recently how much I have been craving sunlight and fresh air. Living in a cabin below the waterline I have no windows but stay in varying degrees of darkness. The hospital is on the same deck so there is no sunlight within the lab either. While this is normal for most hospital labs I have been blessed to work in one that not only has windows but has two walls made of glass – I am forever grateful to the architect of Anna Jaques! Needless to say, I have been starved for daylight and find that I cannot spend enough time up on the deck soaking in some sun before I venture back downstairs. Before starting work, during lunch, after dinner before the sun goes down – every spare second I can get outside is worth it.
Don’t get me wrong, living on Deck 3 is not without its benefits. The cabin is very conducive to sleeping at any time of day or night which is particular useful for the five other shift workers I share it with. There is also the daily commute to work. Living on the same deck as the hospital makes my morning travel somewhere between 60 and 90 seconds depending on traffic (number of people in the hallway, etc).
So although I will be coming home to some of the shortest days of the year and I’m sure I will go into shock with the cold temperatures I am looking forward to the sunlight pouring in my windows at all times of day at home and work.