Thursday, January 31, 2008

Jet Lag

7:00 am – What am I doing awake at this God-forsaken hour?

My body rarely allows me to function as a sane and pleasant person before 8:30 in the morning, so I only rarely view the world at 7:00.

But then, my family’s bodies seem to believe that airline travel is unnatural. Our bodies collectively agree that a person should not be rewarded with a full night’s sleep after traveling over 9,000 miles in 12 hours.

Let’s run the numbers.

In an average 24 hour period, our family sleeps thus:
L--: about 15 hours
S--: same, about 15 hours
Lynne: about 8 hours
Dave: about 7 hours

Since waking at 10:00am on Thursday morning, January 31st – or over the last 38 hours - our family has slept thus:

L--: about 12 hours
S--: about 11 hours
Dave: about 6 hours
Lynne: about 4 hours

The real trouble is that we are now facing a day where we ought to stay awake entirely. S—woke up at 1:30 this morning and has had a cheerful morning ever since. I fear that she will crash in a few hours, falling so heavily asleep that there will be no possibility of resuscitation. Leading to yet another sleepless night.

So far the jet lag is the only challenge we’ve faced. The flight went well, and landed very close to on time despite the winter weather predicted both in China and in Chicago. We feel quite at home, rather than overwhelmed with culture shock, although I do feel mighty uncomfortable drinking water from the tap. And the yards, empty streets and barren skies of the suburbs look like vast amounts of empty space to me.

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