Resting On One’s Laurels; Anticipation/ Trepidation; Recent Sleep Research Reinforces Previously Held Views; Kid Food  

Yesterday was a no blog day. I commented on this in an email to a friend.
Me: I am not blogging today. I am content to merely rest on my laurels (wherever they many be.)
My laziness was induced by the wonderful piece that Kathleen wrote, the link to be found in my November 15, 2018 blog. I effusively thanked Kathleen telling her that my self confidence had soared reading her words. Now I am a real pain in the ass.
Excitement and anticipation grows with each passing moment as the Iceland/London trip nears. Matthew of the Rex Whistler sent the following email.
He: We await your return with great ….anticipation ……..or trepidation. I guess we shall discover which on the day!
Me: Trepidation would be proper. I am worse than before, should that be possible.
London friends were sent a dance card outlining my plans. There are lunches at the Rex Whistler (of course), a makeover (with cheese (on the side) at Dolphin Square, plays and dinners with David and Greg. The Tate Britain has a special exhibit of of Edward Burne-Jones and how I LOVE those Pre-Raphaelites. The Assyrians are at the British Museum. Christmas lights glow on Regent Street. It is also to be remembered that there is a gorgeous spa at my wondrous hotel which will allow total relaxation and pampering. The breakfasts are superb and the staff so attentive. Someone sent another suggestion:
He: And watching through peeking fingers at the current farce in the Houses of P.( which really needs a Gilbert and Sullivan to do it justice
Me: Such a jolly idea. I have always wanted to go to the House of Parliament and it is not far from my hotel.
Before I get to London there is Iceland and I have been speaking to several people who have been there and just loved it. I should get to see the Northern Lights, such a treat that shall be. It will be a first, which seems strange considering I lived in the most northerly city in Canada for twelve years. The YWCA had a marvelous sale yesterday. A company had donated clothes, the proceeds of the sale to benefit the Y. There were free fake fur scarves which will keep my neck warm and jumpers. I shall be most chic. Preparation for the trip will include a haircut by Vicky of Suki’s and a mani and pedi from Amy. So it will be a busy week, with water aerobics at the YWCA on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  I do admit to cheating yesterday, rather than go to Amanda’s class I just went and sat in the jacuzzi. After all there were five men sitting in the hot water and my sciatica was a bit bothersome. Everyone, including Amanda, said it was better for me to stretch in the jacuzzi.  I am divinely happy at the Y and it is the best place to meet men, chat with interesting women and laugh with the staff. Next door there is the Hotel Soleil with the Copper Kitchen Restaurant. There is a new French doorman at the hotel – I bravely used my French asking him if he would go to bed with me this evening. He replied in French, which I did not understand but it was translated for me.
He: Yes, with the greatest of pleasure.
Me: Swoon.
Then he went back to work and I never saw him again. But it was fun being so cheeky and it is possible to get away with a lot when you are 75. .
As usual I write from bed. News from UC Berkeley came streaming over the Internet about a favorite subject – sleep. Studies about sleep have been reported on this blog but I have not ben able to find them, even with the excellent search engine. I do remember that someone opined  that the meaning of life is sleep and everything we do is to enable sleep. We work to accumulate money for housing and beds, pillows and blankets. But this study is more scientific. To quote from the article.

Investigating the neural link between sleep and anxiety, UC Berkeley neuroscientists Matthew Walker and Eti Ben Simon are finding that non-Rapid Eye Movement (NREM) sleep plays a key role in calming the overactive brain, especially in the brain regions that process and regulate emotions.

“The more time you spend in deep non-REM sleep, the less anxious you are in the morning,” said Ben Simon in reporting her preliminary findings at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting this week in San Diego.

Moreover, brain scans taken as sleep-deprived participants watched video clips in the morning showed increased activity in such emotion centers as the amygdala “fight-or-flight” reflex, while the medial frontal cortex, which helps temper emotional responses, was virtually shut down.

As for study participants who benefitted from a full night of sleep, those who enjoyed longer periods of non-REM deep sleep reported the lowest levels of anxiety the next morning and showed the least emotional reactivity.

“A good night of deep non-REM sleep can benefit us in terms of anxiety and emotional regulation,” said Ben Simon, a postdoctoral fellow in Walker’s Center for Human Sleep Science at UC Berkeley..

It ends on this bright note. “On a positive note, Walker says, “Deep sleep provides a nocturnal soothing balm, taking the sharp edges off our lives and lowering our anxiety. It’s a form of nocturnal therapy that many of us shortchange in this modern era of insufficient sleep.”

While living in London and during my beginning days in Vancouver I had sleep disturbances. But not now, eight hours of dreamy sleep with meaningful dreams. It is heaven.

On the United flight from SF to Vancouver I ordered the kid’s meal, the box is pictured.


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