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It’s not dark at night; at least not anymore. The wind felt fresh and cool on my face as we drove. It was late, nearly eleven and it wasn’t dark. The harsh lights of a car dealership almost blinded me. Not to mention the light posts lining the streets and the many car lights reaching into the heavy blackness of the road. At that moment, it honestly seemed like day; though it was a synthetic kind of day.

“Jamie, you should stick your head out the window. Dogs are actually right about this one. It’s actually quite…”

“Yeah Bridget whatever” She cut in, not bothering to look up from her iPod. The device covered her in a strange yellow green light. Her eyes ran over the screen, and she scrolled down with her thumb every so often. Jamie wouldn’t care much about my observations. She lived online, a world that was always filled with light.

I turned back to the window, but this time I closed my eyes. Breathing in the night air without the light felt better…it felt more natural.

I’ve always found the dark fascinating. When my parents kissed me goodnight and shut the bedroom door, the blackness that engulfed my bedroom never frightened me. Darkness is quiet, lonely even. I always feel like I can think better when I can’t see. Surroundings change in the dark. Objects that were once familiar are distorted, and if you were to walk around you’d find yourself reaching out to feel your way. Getting to know the texture of a chair you sit in every day, feeling dust on your bookshelf. I think that the dark of night can help us see in many new ways.

Some find the distortions of night scary. People are afraid of the unknown; they like to be in control of everything around them. I think purely relying on sight to understand the world around us is a bit naïve. In the dark you must listen to the sounds around you, feel and smell as if you were blind. We’re given a new depth when we experience something in total darkness.

Many animals love this darkness. Our night is their day. Owls, cats, raccoons and bats dwell in the darkness. Sure, at times the dark may be mysterious and menacing but it can also be captivating.

Jamie had set down her iPod and was now looking out her own window. “Oh Bridget look at the stars!” She exclaimed. I smiled and opened my eyes. We’d passed the bright business light, and there were few cars on the road this far out.

This was the kind of night I liked; calm, cool, and shrouded in black. Oh, and Jamie was right; the stars were beautiful. They now had no outside light to obscure them. The shined through the darkness, a gentle, enchanting form of light that was hard to ignore.
Jamie locked her iPod, the screen went black, and night truly began.



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