That was fast: for about a week after the return to Eastern Standard Time, by the time my subway train came above ground at Fern Rock, the sun was fully up and the streetlights (which I believe are activated by the light levels in the environment) were off. But of course, the sun is continuing to rise a bit later and set a bit earlier, every day, so the level of daylight decreases every morning.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, as I departed Fern Rock on the regional rail train, the sky was so dim that the streetlights were still on. In this case, it's because the clouds were so opaque that they blocked most of the sunlight. (I know this because on Thursday and Friday, when skies were clear, the streetlights were on when I arrived at the station, but they'd turned off by the time I caught my train.) However, I guess if my assignment lasts far enough into December, I'll see days when the sky is still fully dark when the regional rail train pulls out. Already, I'm seeing only a tiny bit of twilight when I leave in the morning and arrive home at night. I'm resigned to seeing sunlight through the windows of my own house only on weekends for the next few months.
Returning for a moment to the subject of Fern Rock: if anyone here has a favorite Philly-area investigative reporter, email me the person's name because I have a task for them. My screen name on AOL.com is the same as the six characters that precede ".blogspot.com" in this blog's URL.
The task I have in mind is for someone, somewhere, to convince SEPTA to do something about the mess that pigeons have made at Fern Rock. Both the subway and regional rail portions of that station have some areas where it's obvious that pigeons have roosted in the rafters for some time. It's as disgusting as it is unsanitary to have to walk through areas of pigeon mess all over the floor that are so widespread as to be unavoidable. This is especially true on the huge (higher than two stories tall) stairs that extend from the inbound regional rail platform up to the Subway fare booth. Pigeon droppings under one particular beam not only extend the entire width of the stairs, but cover a portion of the RAILINGS as well. I was so revolted by this, the first time I saw it, that I became unwilling to touch ANY of the railings in the station from then on. Anyone who knows me offline is aware that I normally rely on the rail when I navigate on stairs, due to chronic knee pain, but not
Anyway, I should think that a good investigative reporter would welcome the opportunity to educate SEPTA, and any other operator of an outdoor area used by the public, on the need to clean up after unsanitary hazards. I don't dislike pigeons at all, but if they've taken up residence anywhere that their mess could make people sick, they need to be evicted from that location.