SLEEPLESS IN LA QUINTA
Not too many nights ago, I spent a sleepless night and it was a doozy. After the 11 o’clock news, I turned out my bedside lamp, turned over to go to sleep — I had taken the bedtime pills, and one of them is a tranquilizer so all was in place to relax and have a peaceful night’s sleep. No way! I laid there, then started tossing and turning, taking deep breaths, saying some prayers, but then the wild thoughts kept whirling about in the old brain.
At 1 AM , still bug-eyed wide awake, I figured I’d go off to the kitchen to make a cup of my old standby – Hot Chocolate. I would sit there sipping and relaxing. This routine has worked for months — to the tune of over 10 boxes of Nestle’s or Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate. This has been a very successful activity no matter what time it was — 1 AM, 2 AM, or 3 or 4. It had become a sort of security blanket. If I woke up, I’d go do the Hot Chocolate scene, go back to bed, go to sleep, and awaken at 8 o’clock. Off I went to go through this rigamarole, and sat there in the dining room wide awake, and there I sat with the eyes getting buggier and buggier. Tried the bed at 3 AM, but still no shut-eye. At 4 o’clock , it was apparent that no z-z-z-z-z’s were going to happen, so thought I may as well get up and do something constructive like shuffle the papers around on my desk which happens to be my Grand Parents — Marco and Guadalupe Forster’s — dining room table, circa 1860.
Some people I know tell me that when they are having a sleepless night, they get up and do the wash, or do some house cleaning, or do some chore that needs doing. That would not be to my liking at all. The only chore I am responsible for around here is the washing, and all that racket of the washer and dryer at that hour would not be very conducive to put me into a good mood. My eyes were all scratchy and burning, and the body was making itself very difficult for me to move it. I was a mess, and after the sun came up, I remained a mess that whole day. A living zombie — but not too alive.
That day –after the sleepless night — couldn’t possibly have ended soon enough for me, and I started getting ready for bed really early. The regular routine of shower, facial cleanser, then the teeth, and finally the goodnight pills had been changed a couple of nights before. “Why?” — you might ask. It was because the side of my right knee had lost in a collision with the coffee — no, make that– the cocktail table, and so the knee was necessarily swathed in bandages to staunch the flow of my life’s blood which is probably in very short supply at this late date. When these little accidents happen — and they are definitely sent to “try me” — I have to change the usual shower routine so the wound won’t get wet. I have to go to Plan B, or even C and do my version of a “spit bath,” and this demands my standing in my deep bathtub — a very dangerous maneuver in itself — to wash all the lower 1000 body parts. Finishing off the upper 1000 parts is performed at the hand basin. I am presuming that you would know about the body’s 2000 parts because of that TV commercial which kept announcing the fact for several years. And I believe it about the 2000 parts when I am in the midst of these half & half clean-ups. This second half at the hand basin is where I went wrong on this soon-to-be sleepless night, but I did not realize it until 2 nights later. Starting phase 2, I got out of the tub — very gingerly — grabbed my facial cleanser out of the shower stall, and in taking the few steps to the basin, a huge light bulb lit up in my head –just like in the funny papers — and I nearly dropped my uppers. Oh my gosh, it dawned on me that on Sleepless Night, I had not used that cleanser but instead had grabbed the one by the basin that is used in the morning. I gathered my wits about me, found my reading glasses and read the label on the cleanser in my hand:
“ DEEP CLEAN
Relaxing nightly cleanser
Wash your day away”
Then I grabbed the other one from the basin which read:
“CLEAN & CLEAR”
Oxygen infused formula
WAKES YOU UP”
That is the end of this story. There is a message here somewhere that does not apply only to beauty products: You cannot be too careful these days — you must read all the labels and be sure that what you are reading is sinking in — what’s more.