My Relationship with Sleep
"It’s funny how all my life, getting into bed, actually making the moves to get into my bed, are far more difficult than any normal person, anyone else I’ve ever known. Further, it is against my very grain to turn off the light and actually, softly, calmly, close my eyes, and attempt slumber. On top of this cake, if you will, is a thin but noticable icing of insomnia — a whirring of wheels and whistles in the dark comfort of my bedroom. The ideas snowball, all of a sudden I’m in a fierce political debate, I replay moments of my life like small collections of frames from an old movie… And then, what if I start thinking about words and writing — oh no.
And then I never really can bring my head from my pillow in the morning, can’t ever seem to will myself more movement than to reach for snooze and briefly thank God for the chance to do so. Regardless of the brewing coffee, the prospect of any sort of food, or the hopes and dreams of the day — hesitating that exit is both a blissful moment that I could hold onto for far too long, and also a reminder that, surely, this evening I will climb into bed early, putting my head right back in this same square foot of softness and warmth in 16 hours. Repeat.
Writing about this sequence for the first time in my life, I just signed/yawned enormously due to possible emotional exhaustion from recalling all of this, or perhaps my body is hinting at the fact that I am once again stalling.”
- Taken from my journal last week. Still laughing at this very apparent paradox existing in my life, and for so long.
64 Days in France
I went to a vintage market over the weekend in northeastern Lyon. Basically it was a warehouse full of hipsters of all ages selling old jean jackets, weathered shoes, deeply creased leathers, wintered wool and fur coats, silk scarves… Among these items, various garage sale-type finds poked through, my favorite being a Nikon F camera, the first SLR released by Nikon, which had ceased manufacturing in 1974. The thing was heavy, untarnished and unscratched, and as I gawked it dawned on me that this was a serious find, so how much was it? 250€. Ha yeah k bye. Told my mom this and she says, “Oh I think I have one of those in the garage! And an extra lens and flash for it too. ” WIN. THANKS MOM. Digging that thing up ASAP. I happened to find a heavy wool sweater that is very light tan with flecks of blue and was solid Shetland wool for 15€, and also a wool beanie for 5€ that is a blue and green zigzag sort of design. Then I got a little crazy and even had a hot cup of mulled wine.
I awoke this morning to find a gentle snow falling, a half inch already accumulated on the ground. It has already started melting, now that the temperature has risen substantially, or one degree to be more specific. The next five days are supposed to be similar to this — snow and rain and the temperature hovering around 0 (yes I’m in Celsius, people).
Though it looks as though Belgium will have to happen after the holidays, the Fête des Lumières is in two weeks and the entirety of Europe will be here to see it, so that should be exciting. It is exclusive to Lyon, and lucky me, j’habite ici. Two weeks after that I’m off to the US for Christmas.
But what about Thanksgiving!? Well, Brigitte is wonderful and is planning a mini-Thanksgiving dinner next Thursday night. Multiple pies, the most giant French chicken available, gravy, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole if possible? Maybe somehow make sweet potato pie, have a scavenger hunt to find pearl onions, and adventure into the world of homemade stuffing — all of these things combined with a few hungry French natives who have never heard of such a holiday and I guess we’ll have a party. As long as I can put whipped cream on my pumpkin pie, I’m happy.
I am determined to exhaust my brain in the French language today, so à bientôt.