Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Sleeping Through the Night

June 18, 2007

Most of us have experienced difficulty sleeping in a new place. Our situation is similar to maybe what others have experienced, except with a few twists.

Sleeping in our village home is essentially like camping, but inside a house with open jealousy windows, no screens, bed bugs, and a mosquito net. We are at one with our environment.

There is a myth about the crowing of roosters at dawn. They don’t stop crowing at dawn, but stop. They start at 1:00 am calling back to one another, every hour until 6:00 am (dawn). Combined together they create a chorus of considerable racket.

Dogs sleep during the day and are active in packs at night. Like groups of rowdy teenagers, they fight amongst themselves, adding to the nocturnal symphony.

There is an occasional gunshot, probably of someone shooting a neighbors pig in his garden. Other unusual sounds come from the surrounding jungle. Birds, I think, but I haven’t really investigated.

Added to the noise is the fact that you drink a lot of water in the tropics. What goes in; must come out. Younger bladders may not have as much pressure to visit the toilet outside several times in the night, but I do. We all drink from three to five quarts a day.

The only animals who seem to sleep soundly through the night are the pigs. They are huddled together dreaming of the coconut breakfast.

Well, dawn is breaking. It is time to go to prepare for Samoan language class and try to keep eyes open.


Teri said...

Oh Dad, bed bugs? Do they bite all night long? Can I send you some kind of insecticide to spray on the mattresses? I'd be happy to find a product designed for that purpose and put it in the mail. Hey, that reminds me...have you gotten any mail from the States yet?

Teri said...

Oh, and about the sleeping...I can't help but think of the Braden's Ode to Mary & Nick. How is Mary sleeping now that she doesn't have a car???