Snatching a few winks

Sleeping is an enjoyable past time outside of the compulsory hours at night.

From sleepy Joes to sleeping beauties the art of sleep takes myriad forms. Every one of them, a testimony to the fact that sleeping is an enjoyable past time when indulged outside of the six to seven compulsory hours at night. For those who disagree I will present my case for defence. 

Take for instance the security guards on duty outside apartment complexes and business centres. As long as there is brisk influx of people and vehicles, the man behind the security enclosure has an air of business about him. He will stop all and sundry, from a close highly-placed relative of a resident on a visit, to the local door-delivery-boy from the neighbourhood supermarket. The protocol of signing the visitors’ register and other finer aspects of recording information of any passer-by is meticulously adhered to. 

Yet, when the briskness of the inflows and outflows dips, there is a corresponding dent in his passion for playing the role of the watchful dog, sniffing for intruders. In this interval his heavily laden eyes too dip, taking a momentary plunge into the realms of sleep and snore. Anyone can either stealthily or even quite noisily slip into the hitherto forbidden territory without him batting an eyelid. Such is the irrevocable joys in snatching a wink when business is at its lull. 

Take another popular siesta time, that of sleeping in class rooms of high-schools and colleges. Any veteran teacher worth his salt will vouch for the fact that when the class is unusually silent and apparently attentive it has nothing to do with a sudden-found enthusiasm to the subject or the improvements in teaching skills. It is more likely than not, that the students are fast sleep, some with eyes closed and many with eyes wide open.

There are still several other novel ways in which sleep is exercised and enjoyed by an average man. Over-worked house wives doze in the darkness of cinema theatres when out on a family trip to a multiplex, stressed out drivers catch up on lost sleep during their waiting time, fatigued men fall asleep in buses and subways en-route their destinations and scores of tired people simply catnap at the slightest pretext.

Whether sleeping for rest or sleeping for want of nothing else to do, one is refreshed after such snoozes, though many a time with much mortification. During one particularly boring lecture on the ‘Indian Economy’ in the economics hour during my graduation, I had fallen into deep slumber. I only woke up to the guffaws of my classmates with the lecturer breathing down my neck, desperately shaking me up to face both her wrath and my shame! 

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