The Horror of Waking Up

View takeoff! on Flickr

View takeoff! on Flickr by stuart murdoch

by Kevin Lawver
originally published at 09:21AM on Saturday, May 31, 2008

I woke with a start, unable to see and uncomfortable (the not seeing being the more dire of the two). I was confined, a strap across my waist even though I was laying mostly flat. There was a horrible mechanical drone, constant and unwavering. I panicked, unsure of my location, destination or future. That was the first second…

I clumsily sat up and felt my face, and removed the mask. Of course I was on a plane. I felt ridiculous and looked around to see if anyone else had seen my flailing. They were thankfully all sleeping as well, most lubricated into slumber by the copious amounts of alcohol they provide in business class. My seat mate was snoring loudly with his mouth open.

I never sleep on planes. I usually watch movies, read books, listen to my iPod or play Brain Age on my DS Lite. Mostly, it’s because I can’t get to sleep confined in an uncomfortable chair with engines screaming in my ears. But, it’s also partly waking up surrounded by strangers, covered in sleepsweat and not being able to see.




  • from THX 0477:

    Nice twist. The picture took a minute to load so initially I’m imaging some gross, secret lab and impending painful experimentation.

  • from LovingYourHeartbreak♥:

    hahaha i really liked it. My pic loaded immediately, so I kinda figured. But, when you said you couldn’t see, I got confused. Great imagery. Love it. ahahahah

  • from Blusparrow:

    I can’t sleep on planes either, to loud and the fact that I am not on some solid ground. I hope you come back to write some good stories like this one! =)

  • from ♠Ana Cristina♥:

    I’m famous among my friends for being able to sleep anywhere, anyhow. Doesn’t matter if I’m seated or lying down. Standing up, I have yet to try, but I wouldn’t doubt it. Despite this, I find I am unable to sleep on planes. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone else capture that horrible feeling of waking up on a plane not knowing where you are quite as well. Oh, and I love that word, sleepsweat.

  • from Kevin Lawver:

    Thanks, everybody! I’m pretty sure I didn’t make up “sleepsweat”. I know I’ve heard it (or read it) somewhere before.