I was intending to push on today, but decided against it. I woke early at 6am, and my stomach was crying out for food. In Japanese there is a phrase called “nido ne”, which means to “sleep a second time”, used to describe the act of eating breakfast and then going back to bed for some more sleep. This was my plan for the morning at least.
I found my way to a toasted dumplings shop and had a parge plateful of tasty toasted duplings washed down with sweet soy milk.
Back to my hotel and I slept until 9am.
I’ve never taken sleeping pills before, but today I decided that they may be the way forward. I only need them to get me some decent sleep until I get to Shanghai, I figured, so I visited the local pharmacy.
“I am not sleeping well,” I told the pharmacist.
He was a mid-twenties looking guy. Skinny, in a long dirty white gown. “How long have you not slept well?” he asked.
“About two weeks,” I replied.
The pharmacist took my hand and indicated for me to sit down. He laid my arm on the shop counter and began counting my heartbeat at my wrist. A minute of silence later, he stood. Went and rummaged on a shelf near the back of the shop.
He came back with a small plastic bottle of Chinese medicine. To be honest, I was hoping for some strong and nasty synthetic pills, but I figured that if the Chinese believed in this stuff, then it’s gotta be good. Looking at the ingredients, they all looked natural, so that would have to be bonus, I thought.
The price was 0.40 Euro for a five day supply. I was to take the medicine two times a day. It was in the form of little black pellets the size of small ball bearings. A capful of them two times a day.
I thanked the pharmacist, and nodded politely at the two old women who had been standing at the counter the entire time, silently observing the scene.
I took one capful of the medicine when I got back to my hotel at 10am, and took another nap. I woke up at 3pm.
I have my doubts as to whether the medicine actually caused me to sleep so long during the day, because when I tried to sleep that night, I had a terrible sleep once again, despite taking the medicince. So many random fleeting thoughts sprinting through my head…classic sign of burnout…