Saturday, November 24, 2018

Time zone stories of a nomadic student

Back to cooking in Atlanta
I have this love-hate relationship between the daylight savings observed in many countries. It lets me sleep longer and avoid going to work when it is too dark in the autumn and winter. The sunlight starts to shrink with time as we progress into autumn, and the winter time (which is the actual/natural time) kicks in and gives us one more hour to sleep. But as days progress into winter, the sunlight continues to shrink, still making you wake up and go to work in the dark. On the other hand, as spring comes, the days start to lighten up, with more sunlight. Then the summer time starts, to make you wake up earlier, and to give you more light in the nights.
Time zone change is another factor that you often have to deal with when you migrate from east to west or vice versa. It sometimes helps, and sometimes does not. I found that moving towards west usually helped. It helped me when I moved to Portugal from Sri Lanka in 2012, and then again this year when I moved to Atlanta from Portugal. I have been a night person since 2009. This is a habit I initially picked up with my first GSoC, as my mentors and other developers were from EU and US while I was in Sri Lanka. Later in Portugal, my deadlines often kept me up until mornings (conference submission deadlines are often given as 23:59 EDT or 23:59 AoE/anywhere on earth, which is the next day morning until noon in Portugal). This time although I moved to Atlanta in June, I maintained my biological clock synced with Portugal. Therefore, I go to bed at 10.30 pm (3.30 am in Portugal) and wake up at 6 am every day (11 am in Portugal). I leave home around 7.10 am and arrive at the lab at 7.25 am (if the bus is on time) to 7.33 am (if the bus is delayed). I hope to maintain this habit.

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