The Sleep Problem
Sleep has become quite the struggle. The noise and disturbances on the street, plus the oppressively loud club music, have made it very difficult to rest – even with earplugs firmly, well, plugged! My house is mere meters from the fence which lines the road. No wonder the noise sounds like it’s inside my house. But with the aid of sleep-deprived desperation plus some imaginative thinking from my mom (Grazie, Mamma!), I have come up with a solution…
I sleep in the hallway 😉
Yes, ’tis true – each night the spare bed mattress stretches out along the bare floor in the hallway, and every door is closed to form a cocoon-like room of peace and quiet. Because the hall is right in the middle of the house, and literally surrounded on all sides by rooms, it is that extra layer further away from the noise. The first night I tried this, I slept the whole night through, no earplugs, no drunken yells crashing into my dreams, no disturbances until my alarm buzzed me awake. Amazing! I tried it a few nights in a row (just to be sure it wasn’t merely exhaustion that made me sleep so soundly) but it has definitely made a world of difference. The relief and refreshing are palpable. And even IJ gets in on making the bed now that it’s at his level.
Granted, it requires a little ritual each night to lay out the mattress, pile on the blankets and pillows, and line all cracks beneath the doors with linen (because who wants the night-roaming cockroaches to find the cozy floor-bed?? No thanks!), and then each morning to remove the linen lining the doors, fold up the blankets and prop the mattress back up by the wall and out of the way… But all this is nothing compared to a good night’s sleep, and my health and happiness levels are already feeling the benefits 🙂
Flies, Flies and Still More Flies
The only issue still plaguing me is the rubbish pile outside, which unfortunately continues to grow. It sits untouched, except for millions of flies. The flies!! These are a real pest, and I’ve resorted to ducking in and out of my door like a ninja, swatting and swerving and trying to make sure they don’t come inside with me! The few who do get in find themselves prey to the mighty hunter, Indiana Jones (aka little orange cat), so they fortunately don’t last long…
Last week I flew out of Hagen on Wednesday, ending up in Sydney where I attended the annual PSI (Press Services International) Conference for Young Writers. This was amazing!! And I felt especially grateful to be there, as the trust fund had kindly given me a travel scholarship to cover half my costs. I wandered the day in a grateful daze, pinching myself now and then because I couldn’t believe it was all real. It was an oasis to my soul on so many levels…
It was great to be inspired and challenged in various areas of writing, i.e. talking about the difference between the craft (communication skills, word smithing, critical thinking etc) and the art (creativity, imagination, ideas etc) of writing. There were various workshops throughout the day, plus lots of time to socialise.
The underlying tint to the day was a love for the written word, and a passion to pen as many as we can. And we freely spoke of our desire to find God in our writing and have Him speak to others through the words He gives us. All in all, it was an uplifting and encouraging time and, though I didn’t know most people before I arrived, I felt that there were kindred spirits everywhere.
After the workshops, we had Award Presentations. All writers receive a “Best Article” award as judged by the panelists. Each article you write is graded and allocated points, and they then take your article with the highest score as your “best” one. Of course I have only submitted 3 in total, being new to the program, but it was cool to see that the favourite was “What the Witch Said”… Long Live Lewis!!
Check out my three articles thus far, HERE
How to Relax Like Indiana Jones
So after all the adventures, I am now back into the crazy flow of MAF and PNG! So many things on the go, which I’ll try to write more about next week. Look out for some “IJ Adventures” to come! That cheeky little orange puss is always up to something…