Sharif zzz’s around

Last spring, on a balmy, sunny Friday afternoon, I got a very important phone call from my sister.

She told me to find somewhere quiet and sit on something firm. I, anxious and excited, threw my bag on the lawn and sat in the Branford hammock.

“Guess who can’t smile anymore,” she started, whispering the name of a matronly guest who had stopped by Vancouver the week prior. “Botox fail.”

Before long, the heat of the day gave way to a breezy evening, and I found myself drifting off to the sound of my sister’s new findings on the West Coast.

About an hour later, I awoke to discover rain soaking my shirt and my phone lost in a dewy bush a few feet away from me.

That was my first forray into sleeping around in public, and surprisingly enough, it hasn’t been my last.

I’ve since slept in libraries and courtyards, under trees and tables, on benches and the Women’s Table, and through classes and meals. Over these past two years of napping, I’ve come to learn to some lessons that I’d like to share with you, loyal reader: first, the best place to nap is outdoors; and two, the sleeper must ensure he doesn’t appear weird to passersby or else he will be poked awake by Yale security.

I learned the first lesson when I woke up propped against a tree after a Saturday morning post-brunch snooze. I opened my eyes to the sight of the fields of Old Campus glowing in the sunlight, the sparkling notes of a chirping songbird wafting overhead. It was certainly a different experience waking up on the second-floor service balcony of Commons, where I woke to the unusually loud belch of a diner below.

I learned the second lesson after falling asleep on a pew in Battel Chapel. I was holding a plastic bag of empty juice boxes and bottles I had intended to put into the recycling receptacles outside the chapel —no further information necessary.

But more importantly, I’ve come to gain an appreciation for slumber — a nugget of knowledge I’d rank among the most weighty of those given me during my time at this fine, fine institution. Indeed, though my sleep schedule may be confused by the untimely naps, the extra sleep has done wonders for my health and well-being. My dark circles have faded, my skin is firm and my smile lines are filling in. Thank you, sleep — whenever, wherever, you’re always there.

Here’s to not needing botox before 50.

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