I have a small alarm clock that wakes me on days I have to work. It’s one of those types that’s automatically set via a radio signal to the official US time kept by the navy’s atomic clocks. More importantly it has a serene beeping alarm sound that wakes me in the morning. It’s very gentle and easy. Plus there’s a never-fail snooze button that lasts eight minutes and is a piece of cake to hit in a groggy morning state.

Last week the batteries in it died and I had to be abruptly awakened by my back-up alarm clock which is one of those stereotypical obnoxious alarms that everyone hates. It grates on the mind and makes me curse the fact that I have to wake up at a certain time. Which gets me into a sour mood instantly wishing, first thing in the morning, that I was able to retire yesterday.

I kept putting off picking up a pair of batteries and finally Tuesday morning after Labor Day weekend I decided it would be the last time I’d wake to that infernal racket.

And yesterday, when I awoke again to my gentle, preferred alarm sound, I was so much the happier for it. It almost tricks me into thinking I’m waking up naturally, which is essentially my life’s goal. Well, not to trick myself, but rather to actually be able to wake up naturally.

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