Sleeping with Strangers
Years ago, I laughed at a friend who always worried about his corporate business trips. Though they were top executives, his corporation roomed upper-tier staff together at hotels. He had to take along with him his carefully-folded “executive pajamas” and slippers, obsessing over the bathroom.
Recently, I was in a research situation at a remote locale, staying in an historic home with other roomies. Not easy, but doable, this sleeping with strangers, lol. Some of them mumbled in their sleep, sighed, harrumphed, and one even apologized in advance in case she might scream bloody murder in the middle of the night, due to horrific nightmares.
It was difficult for me to be comfortable with others in my personal space, or vice-versa. They all wanted the lights out and I had no way of telling what time it was. So I cradled my travel alarm clock throughout the night, holding it under a blanket and hitting the light function just to see that another five minutes had passed. Usually, I wake up each morning without any alarm, no matter if I need to rise at 3:00 am or 5:00 am, but with roommates allowing me to go first into the bathroom, there was added pressure: what if I accidentally overslept.
And hence, the checking-the-alarm-every-five-minutes.
Sleeping with strangers is not for me in any way, I’ve decided. Are you surprised?
—————Tags: business travel roommates, communal company accommodations, corporate business travel, rooming with coworkers, stress of strangers sharing a room