Friday, March 13, 2009

The All-Nighter(s)

It was an unusual trip in that I had to stay up all night for three nights in a row. Surprisingly, it wasn’t so bad. My mind was engaged and the time went quickly. It’s much easier to pull an all-nighter when you know there will be opportunity to sleep on the other side. When I was single (and younger) there was nothing to keep me awake after staying out all night. But kids are like an alarm clock without a snooze bar, so when I’m up late these days I’m constantly and unavoidably doing the sleep math—if I go home now, I’ll only be “this” tired. Knowing that I had opportunity to catch 7 hours this time left me stress free about whittling away the wee hours.

It’s a bizarre thing to live against the flow of the natural rhythms of the world. After the first night, my body felt heavy and thick, as if I were walking on tub of oobleck. The night gives a calm, eerie stillness to the world that can be unsettling at first, but sort of liberating once you get used to it. I started thinking about what other people were up with me—the insomniacs watching infomercials or the young couples passionately sweating the night away. Where were the people going who were driving on the roads at 4am?

Thankfully, daylight savings time had passed so it was still dark when I got back to my hotel. I detest going to sleep after the sun has come up. Even in the party days of yore I always have, though I don’t know why. So each morning was a race to seal off my hotel room and drift to sleep before the first rays of light peeked around the gaps in the window shade. I imagined this is what a vampire must feel like.


As I was packing up on my last morning, the phone rang. WonderWife™ was crying. A mechanical problem grounded her plane and the throngs of spring breakers made getting another flight to Florida impossible. Everyone was disappointed. The Bean didn’t get to take his plane ride, WW™ didn’t get to attend her grandma’s 85th birthday party and I didn’t get my weekend of solitude. Sprout remained indifferent to our plight, as long as somebody was feeding her mashed bananas and Cheerios every few hours. We collectively cursed the airlines and drunken college students.

With our plans now shattered, I decided that we couldn’t loaf around the house all weekend. We needed to do something as a family, something fun to keep us from wallowing in the thoughts of the weekend we were all supposed to be having.

I texted WW™, “How about we got to Disneyland this weekend?”

Since WW™ has still reeling from her less-than-pleasant experience to and from the airport, I wasn’t sure how she was going to take this suggestion. When she gets stressed, my wife gets tunnel vision and can usually only focus on one thing at a time. I braced my sleep-deprived body for her reaction. Theme parks were my thing. Would she see this as a selfish request?

The phone rang.

“You just made my day,” she said. “That is an excellent suggestion.”


B, Esq. said...

Good workd DGB! Have fun at disney!

SciFi Dad said...

THAT is something only a Dad (not a father) would do.