burbling dogs and the sleep-deprived

“He would lie in the bed and finally, with daylight, he would go to sleep. After all, he said to himself, it is probably only insomnia. Many must have it.”
Ernest Hemingway, A Clean Well Lighted Place

With all due respect to the literary genius of Mr. Hemmingway, insomnia is not something I come by willingly. It is a product of poor choices (drinking strong coffee late into the evening), snoring dogs at either side of the bed, and a whirling dervish wife who will fall asleep in 12 seconds tops, but then is awake an hour or two later, tossing all night long. Five A.M, is the best sleep of the night – for twenty or thirty minutes.


Dogs do not seem to suffer insomnia.  There are no remedies like melatonin,  ZzzQuil, sleepytime teas, warm milk, or a shot of bourbon advertised to help dogs slumber.  They just do.    On the other hand,  I am often called upon to wake my drowsy bride resting on the couch in the front room around 9 PM, so we can go to bed together.   When I am in the throes of the creative blogging process, I often realize it is at or after 11 PM;  she may be fast asleep – with Dexter curled up on the couch by her feet, and Comet in the middle of the room.   It is those evenings I am certain to have the coffee pot already set up for the morning.   Five AM comes awfully soon.

While it does not often contribute to my insomnia,  both dogs have rituals when I am writing late into the evening that might contribute to their ease in falling asleep.  Dexter will fluff his bedding – which sits directly behind by writing desk -and then settles in.  It generally aggravates sneezing due to dog hair and dust kicked up.

Comet, and lately Dexter as well,  have a habit of licking one or both front paws.  The slurping used to goad me.   Now, a couple brusk  “Stop!” cries from me and he will slurp more quietly.  One night my wife and I were both were fast asleep.  Out of the darkness, I stirred first to sounds of labored breathing followed by “burbling” yips that grew louder.  Rousing Comet took effort that left me restless the remainder of that night.   Funny thing though.  The nights that I have insomnia,  I seem to have no lack for inspiration in blogging.

And now,  our choice tonight in relaxing, mindless streaming television is The Haunting of Hill House.  Ghost stories and family drama.  The dogs are sleeping soundly. Perhaps a dog and ghost story, but there goes Comet again. Burbling in his sleep again.  I am thinking everything I have blogged tonight will put even the most sleepless reader asleep in minutes.    Maybe this is a new niche for me?




  1. Melatonin is a hormone of Youth. Minimal dose worked great on me, but I don’t’ seem to “wake up” at the time for the day. My drowsiness continues for 5 more hours. So that did not work. Although, I discovered ashwagandha and that works like a charm. I guess the African herb decreases the anxiety and allows me to sleep through the night. Having said that, just like you, the inspiration oozes out when the insomnia is at large. And your doggies are so funny. Licking and situating in bed and moreover very very cute.

    Liked by 1 person

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