It's late. Two twenty-one in the morning to be exact. It's a kind of late that only certain types experience. Musicians, Those who like to Party Hard, Taxi Drivers, Late night truckers, Graveyard shift workers, and Bartenders, just to name a few. It's a time of night, or morning that I tend to get to myself, even if I'm not alone. Even as I type my husband is snuggled in bed with what can only be described as a pack of cats. I do envy his snoring sometimes, it means simply that I am awake, and he is not.
I'm always surprised when I end up at this time of night all by my lonesome. There is no rhyme or reason, no formula that predicts which night I'll end up glancing at the clock and realizing that a "reasonable hour" has not been seen in a while. I could have woken up early, woken up late, felt great all day, spent the day in bed, had a lot of caffiene, or even had no caffiene at all. Amazingly enough, on the rare occasions that I attempt better sleep through over the counter pharmaceuticals, I still don't always sleep. I have to say that there is very little in this world that I find more odd than taking a sleeping pill, and never falling asleep.
There are not as many options as one would think at this time. Driving is straight out, since I do actually WANT to sleep sometime, I'm just unable at the moment. Watching a movie or two is an option, but I never seem to really enjoy them, and just end up fiddling the whole time. Once in a blue moon I'll go out with a friend who keeps odd hours as well. (a musician who works in a bar... see above examples) But most times, I'm left with myself.
I do make some inconvenient decisions at odd hours. I made a promise to myself just last week in the wee hours to read the "Twilight" series, as I make fun of them so often, that I felt the need to make sure that I wasn't unjust in my mocking. I'm not. I'm finished with book two, and feel the need to read the others, not for enjoyment mind you, but almost as bit of self flagellation. It's almost like running a marathon. I test myself with how much bad book I can stand in one sitting, and find myself angry at the author's conjugation, as if mine was better. I also bought a serger off of Craig's list this week on a late night whim, though I don't think it was a bad decision even if it was a bit rash.
So what to do with a late night. Well, I've folded enough stars my fingertips ache. There's no one to call and talk to, even though I could really use it. I had more mad thoughts of doing laundry at this hour, but I worry about the quality of everyone's sleep. So after ditching the idea of cleaning the laundry room, or folding towels, I toddled off to my chair to glare at my bookcase in case something new had shown up and I'd want to read that to bide my time until I can lay in bed, and possibly drift off to dream land.
Wouldn't you know it, no new books. So I go for an old friend, Robert Fulghum. Now don't get me wrong, I've never met the man, but I still consider him a friend. I've been reading his books for almost two decades now, and I feel a strong pull towards his writing. Over the years, I've battled with depression, got married, went to school, had friends, managed to lose a few too, and all sorts of in betweens that lay somewhere between boring, and too much for television. Whenever I read Fulghum, I feel that he has too. I feel... I guess that's the most succinct way to put it, I FEEL. I'm always caught off-guard by the sentiment in his work, weather it's an impending MOTB (Mother Of The Bride for those not in the know), or his story of Nicolai Pestretsov. No matter how many times I've read a story before I'll still be laughing, crying, or smiling to myself in that odd knowing way. So I'm sitting here, recovering from a good cry, not the kind that leaves you wrung from head to toe, but one of those times you're better for it since tomorrow WILL be a better day, and thanking him in my own way.
I guess it's odd to think of some author as a friend, someone who will always be there for you, but I know that on my bookshelf, he always will be. I can pick it up at any time, and not be quite so alone in this vast world. When the world is asleep, words are still alive.