Folks that know me – parents, friends, housemates – know that I am, for the most part, one of those people that wakes up happy and chipper and cannot really fathom why waking up is so painful for other people. Rarely can I sleep eight full hours. I’m lucky if I can stay in bed after six or seven hours of sleep. I know this annoys a lot of people, especially my brother who seems to suffer from this pain and makes it very vocal when he asks me to get him up. This morning I woke up for the fourth time in one day. It was just after mine and Pat’s two-hour sleep following our four-hour row. I felt like death warmed over, and finally made the connection: Waking up might be this painful for some people all the time! Oh the humanity! I swear, if this is you I will from this point on try to be more understanding.
What I do know is the harder the sleep, the better. I crawled out to the deck to a calm, sunny day to find Markus rowing nude, and Adam cooking breakfast… clothed, thank you very much. This was a strange version of hell I was traveling through. He handed me a cup of hot coco and tea and the gears in my mind and body began to fire a bit more regularly. In fifteen minutes I felt so good that I may have been rowing through waves of chocolate in a land where every cloud looked like a dinosaur.
I felt so good I figured I would do a little self care after the first day’s full hour of rowing. Brushing my hair, teeth, washing it, trimming my mustache and nails seemed like a reasonable enterprise for an hour away from the oars. My hair did not feel that dirty, nor particularly tangled until I began to brush, and brush and brush… and four weeks of no real shower or brush manifested itself as some hamster sized hair balls, and hair so oily I could create biodiesel with it… well, it wasn’t that bad, but enough that although I was well into the cleaning process I was feeling a lot more dirty.
Most satisfying was the mustache trim. It’s one thing to cultivate a huge beard for a trip like this, but I had not seen my lips in four weeks. I felt… amazing. I still would not past muster in civilization, but am enjoying the dapper, squeaky clean feeling that will last for… who am I kidding its already gone.