Sleep Deprivation is a Powerful Drug; or Rome pt. 1

Mark Stewart Travel Leave a Comment

Three days should be enough.

I’m thinking about monkeys. It’s sometime in the afternoon of the second day, the windows to our very small, though quite beautiful hotel room are shut, curtains doing their best to block out any shred of light from the outside, and the power is off entirely. Last time I was in the washroom, I avoided looking at my reflection in the mirror because the time before that, I barely recognized what was staring back.

Monkeys are very curious… On Don Det, an island on the Mekong river in Laos, our guesthouse had a pet monkey that climbed on peoples back and picked through their hair looking for little bugs, or whatever it is they like to pick out and eat. In Nepal, the monkeys are so comfortable with humans, they will take the sunglasses right off your face and disappear!

“Glory to the newborn king!”

Sitting at a tiny little cafe shortly after we landed on day one, eating a pretty tasty pizza covered in cheese and anchovies, along with some beer and wine… we look like hell. Already awake for too many hours in transit, we resemble a pair of strung out tweekers, pale and beady-eyed, looking as if we’re coming down off a weekend bender of amphetamine abuse. Desperately trying to figure out what to do with our new found misfortune, the wine and delicious salty bites calm us a little. Travel brings speed bumps and mishaps along the way, it’s inevitable, and this was just another. What hurt the most was the fact that after around nine months throughout Asia, and living in a car for six months in Australia… Europe should have been a cake walk! Arrogant mistake.

What makes thinking about monkeys so strange you ask? Nothing. Although the intricately patterned wallpaper is now twisting and melting together, in whatever light happens to slip through the curtains. I think I’m tripping. After nothing more than the odd power nap over the last two and a half days, I suppose things are bound to get a little weird. But when ‘Hark! The herald angels sing!’ is playing repeatedly in the back of my head to ice the cake, there was a mild level of concern. Monkeys, melting walls, and church Christmas songs combine. These were my last memories before I finally had a very long, very needed sleep.

Stay tuned!

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