Awake for the Day

Sometimes the draw of isolation in the wee hours is stronger than the comfortable pull of the sheets. As I write this, it’s not quite 3 in the morning, when I’ve been up for almost an hour. I hope to convince my brain to settle down and let me get back to sleep, but before that happens I must expend the pent-up energy that got me out of bed in the first place. Perhaps it was a dream that caused me to spring awake three hours after I went to sleep. Or perhaps it was something else; an idea that emerges in those mysterious moments midway between the dreams of sleep and the reveries of semi-consciousness. What did it does not matter. What matters is that, once awake, I noticed that elves had packed my sinuses with wet concrete that was in the process of drying into a hard plug when I awoke. I now am awake and more alert than I’d like. What matters is that I want to return to that state of happy unconsciousness we call REM sleep. Talking about it probably will not do the trick. I have to find something else.


I sat in front of the screen of my notebook computer, my eyes closed, letting my mind go where it went. No pressure, no direction, no admonition that sleep would come only after I allow the energy keeping me awake to dissipate. Maybe I went to sleep. I think it was more like going into a waking dream state. I felt comfortable, content. The slight headache I felt earlier was gone. I could breathe without wheezing or whistling. I was conscious of where I was and what I was doing, but not overly aware of my surroundings. It was as if I were experiencing myself third-hand. Odd, that. All was well until my sinuses—which I thought had recovered from their tantrum—decided to intervene. Suddenly, I was acutely aware of my cough. And there I was again. Awake. Ten after 3. Desiring sleep, but still awake.


The doctor visits since our return from our road trip have revealed nothing untoward. Nothing of concern. As expected, the underlying “lose weight and get more exercise” has been the underlying theme, whether spoken or unspoken. But nothing else. That’s good news. So, the bottom line (thus far) is that I really do need to get some exercise. Slowly, very slowly, at first. Slow enough not to overtax my lungs, which are constantly short of breath, but enough to permit my body to gain a little stamina, bit by bit, day by day.


Enough of this for now. I may try sleep again. If my effort succeeds, I will return to this after I wake for the day.


I slept. Until after 7. Getting up so late causes me to feel like I’ve frittered away a significant part of the day. Fortunately, after I woke up late this morning, I was able to entertain myself for a while by reading about Baraboo, Wisconsin. Today’s high temperature in Baraboo is expected to reach 86°F, but tomorrow and the latter part of the week the highs will barely exceed 80°F, which seems delightfully cool in the context of this monstrous heat wave that has engulfed most of the country. The National Weather Service forecasts heat index values here will exceed 110°F after 1 pm today. Baraboo is beginning to sound especially attractive. Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador, is even more appealing, with highs this week ranging from the mid 60s to the low 80s and lows settling around the upper 50s to low 60s. I haven’t checked on housing in Corner Brook, but I found a listing in Baraboo, a cute, updated, and well-maintained little bungalow for $259,900. Actually, I suspect even more appealing would be the area around Helsinki, Finland, where I found a 3-bedroom house (with an additional 2-bedroom guest house) on the sea coast for roughly $712,000 dollars. Except for the price, the place might be perfect. Anyone care to invest with me in buying this delightful place near Helskinki, where current and forecast temperatures of the upper 50s to the low 70s are expected? Your part of the investment will be only $550,000. Call me.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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