Friday, December 26, 2008

I was reading a little from Beecher's "Star Papers", which are just random musings. I ran across this account of his travelings on a train or some type of express, it reminded me of all the people that may be traveling overnight this time of year and some of the difficulties.

"We left Albany at half-past ten. At about eleven, the hum of conversation died away. Every one was busy with the unnatural problem of sleep. In the cars, stretching one's self out for a balmy sleep, means, curling ones self up like a cat in a corner. Short limbs are a luxury when a man sleeps by the square inch. First, you lie down by the right side, against the window, till a stitch in your side, worming its way through your uneasy dream, like an awl, leads you to reverse your position. As you lean on the inside end of your seat, the conductor knocks your hat off, or used your head as a support to his steps as he sways along the rocking passage. At length, with a groan which expresses the very feeling of every bone and muscle and individual organ in your body, you try to sit upright, and to sleep erect. But erect sleep is perilous, even when it is possible. You nod and pitch, you collapse and condense, and finally settle down in a promiscuous heap, wishing that you were a squirrel, or a kitten, and curiously remembering dogs that could convolute on a mat, and birds that could tuck their heads under their wings, and draw their feet and legs up under their feathers. O! that I were round like a marble, and could be rid of protruding members! But such slumberous philosophy and somnolent yearnings for circular shapes die out as you sink again into a lethargy, until the scream of the whistle, the grinding of the brakes, the concussions and jerks, rouse you to the fact that you are stopping....."

Photo from the Internet


Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hi Fred :)

Very interesting and timely post.

Although I don't intend to travel anywhere overnight, I keep travelling in the city by bus quite frequently. The problem or bliss is that I fall asleep within a few seconds of siting in the bus and I wake up with a start when the driver applies sudden brake to stop the bus at different stops.

Besides, when I sleep in the bus I hold on to the bar of the seat before me so that I don't get hurt when sudden brakes are applied.

In one of my early posts I have written as to how I was robbed of my mobile phone while sleeping in the bus.

Many thanks for sharing this post and also for leaving an inspiring comment on my post.


FCB said...

Hi Joseph,
I remember that post of yours where you were robbed while sleeping on the bus. At the time I was so focused on the theft it didn't occur to me that you were able to sleep on a crowded, jostling bus! I don't know how you do it? I can barely get a good sleep in my own bed, much less bouncing along the city streets.
Bliss it is,

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hi Fred :)

I can sleep anywhere, anytime :) :) :)

My problem is to keep awake so that I don't miss out on interesting things in life including your thought provoking,erudite posts which I enjoy very much.

You might laugh at what I am going to say now: I was guided by the simple principle that if I can sit then I will not stand and if I can lie down then I will not sit :) :) :). Is this the height of laziness? Needless to say I missed out on so many good things in life by adopting an easy way of life.

But God has been always with me. He has not let me want in anything so far. He has always guided me , stood by me, supported me through all my frailties.

Best wishes :)

FCB said...

That's funny, but being the same age as you I can completely relate. I try and never miss an opportunity to sit or lie down :)

It does my heart good to hear about the faithfulness of God. He is good, beyond good.
Praise Him,