So sometimes I ponder the mysteries of the universe (because, really, somebody has to). Today I spent the better part of my 25 minute drive to and from lessons pondering how people ever got out of bed before alarm clocks were invented. Did they just wake up with the sun or what? I finally had the sense to google it this evening, and happened upon an enlightening article.
Really interesting stuff, and it makes me want to write a novel featuring water clocks. But now I have more questions.
How did the church bell ringers and the knockers-up know when to wake up? Did they always have to employ the bladder-control method (which struck me as completely hilarious)? If they overslept mightn’t they throw off the equilibrium of an entire town?? Would anyone even notice? How did they know what time to ring the church bells anyway?
Also, does anyone else ever feel bad for fictional characters’ sleeping conditions? Maybe it’s just because I’m a light sleeper and always have a horrible time nodding off in unfamiliar or less-than-ideal surroundings, but I’m always in awe of characters who can fall right to sleep in the woods or a cave or a prison cell and wake refreshed and ready to conquer the world. I can’t even fall asleep on a comfortable couch unless I’m deathly ill, and if I’m running on less than six (but preferably eight or nine!!) hours of sleep I can barely function. I think I would be pretty much useless on an actual adventure—characters in novels don’t seem to have these problems.
They don’t have chapstick, either, which is one reason I’m happy to be living in this lovely modern era. I mean, I read once that pioneers put axle grease on their lips to keep them from getting chapped, but that’s just gross.
And there you have it.
(Apologies for the glimpse into my peculiar brain. This is what happens when I’m not actively working on a novel.)