At ricksteves.com, Louise’s favorite travel guide says, “On arrival, stay awake until an early local bedtime.” Yeah, but Rick isn’t turning 70 in thirteen months.
Jet lag. It gets worse every time I travel, in spite of elaborate preparations. For this trip I purchased a butt pillow, and that helped. (I lament having no butt – women tell me I’ll never qualify as a hunk without it – and feel exquisite pain after an hour of sitting.) I researched inflatable neck pillows until I found The Perfect One (davidsbeenhere.com). I avoided alcohol, even though Condor offered it for free. I even surreptitiously swallowed half a Seroquel on the plane while I thought no one was looking. Nonetheless, when we checked into our Barcelona hotel at 1:00 PM last Sunday, I was asleep by 1:10.
So much for Rick Steves.
But wait! It doesn’t make any difference! In Spain, everything except the bars shuts down around 2:00 PM. No groceries. No shoe shopping (a moment of pity for Louise). No banking or dentistry or museums. People just flee the city and don’t return until 5:00, when everything reopens – and stays open until nine or so in the evening.
Thus, without even a dollop of compromise, Louise and I sleep four hours at night, visit the park or the museum or the bank in the morning, nap until four or five, then carouse in the evening – often until past midnight. No jet lag!
Spain is such a civilized place…
(Photo: Yes, Louise brought Scraps, her favorite stuffed animal. There’s a limit to practicality, after all.)