April 22 – S – Siesta (that’s nap-time)
It is 1pm and as we approach the grocery store to pick up food for lunch, the doors close for siesta. The same thing occurs all along the block – some stores have been closed since noon and some will offer a half hour more to indulge those of us who have come for last minute shopping. But shortly all stores will be dark, curtains will be drawn, and a hush will fall over the busy metropolis of Santa Fe.
Most schools have released students for the day, although some will return for electives after 4pm. Students will go to school from 7:30-noon, although our kids are in a program that is run on a North American model from 8am-3pm. This pick up time to get my kids seriously cuts into my siesta time!!! Ah – my rough life!
The siesta has been a very easy custom to adopt. I thought that my workaholic nature would reject the lazy hazy snoring my way through an afternoon lifestyle, but no, I adapted very quickly! I’m resilient that way. Now, to be honest, not all days do I fall into a sweet slumber, but I still enjoy the quietude of the afternoon that expects nothing more from me than to lay back reading or sleeping.
Of course, the challenge exists for us because our kids end school during siesta time! So when we get them, there are very few stores or cafes open if we need them. And the re-opening time is uncertain and different place to place, but generally by 4:30pm most shops will reopen and the city stretches itself into the awakening afternoon. Businesses and professions often reopen into the evening.
The siesta time is also a dangerous time in Santa Fe these days because as the world closes its eyes, crime increases! So again, we need to be very wary and careful when running out to pick up the kids.
Essentially, I prefer the days with no school pick-up so that I can wile away the afternoon indulging my coveted siesta time!
Without neither guilt nor guile, the siesta is a mainstay in my life for now on! This is a South American custom that I whole-heartedly embrace. There are heaps of studies out there – I did read them – that tell us that this precious siesta is not about being lazy, rather it is a time for recharging the brain. It is a tested and true model for body and brain health and wellness.
Now, I know this will be a challenge to adopt with my hairy workstyle as a teacher, but even if I can sneak one in here or there after school, I know it will be better for the productivity of my brain.