I have at least one more really epic war story, but I thought I’d fast forward a bit for this one. The year was 2011. The War had been “over” for nearly 8 years now, and I had indeed moved on to Bigger and Better Things. I was on a Trip to India. India makes missionaries get a special visa, so I definitely WAS NOT on a “mission trip”—if there even is truly such a thing.
I’ll skip all the details and just say that I had gotten as far as Manali, where 4 of us guys were going to have to spend the night, before setting off on an epic mountain hike the next morning.
Manali is a nice town. Lots of hotels. The one we checked into was considered to be “clean”. The bottom of the door to my room looked like this:
I’m including this picture for your own awareness, just in case you ever see a door with a really huge gap under part of it, and a corresponding carpet trail that’s been worn threadbare. That means something walks there. A lot.
Now, as usually happens on these kinds of trips, you get to sleep in a lot of missionary positions. Being 4 guys, the hotel manager put us in 2 rooms. Each room had only one big bed. That makes sense.
But you see, there are certain ways two dudes can sleep together, and certain ways they cannot.
In Configuration 1, both parties can get adequate rest, but there is potential that their hands might occasionally brush each other. Also, if one of them is a snorer, laying on one’s back will definitely exacerbate that situation.
Configuration 2 is by far the highest-rated configuration. It aims any snoring away from the other person, and keeps all appendages pointed in the appropriate direction: AWAY.
Configuration 3 gets a mention, and bonus points for Homophobic Creativity, but also a word of caution because it puts your face in close proximity to another man’s feet, and generally aims their farts towards your head as well.
Configuration 4 is completely unacceptable. That is all.
“But, why not just sleep on the floor?” you may ask. Because it’s really cold in the mountains, and we’d been stuck on a crowded bus all day long, and when we weren’t on a bus, we were wearing a huge mountain climbing backpack. And the altitude is slightly higher in the Himalayas than it is in South Georgia. By like a mile or two.
SO, we were all tired, and we wanted to get as good of a rest as we could before our epic hike.
Well, I ended up in bed with a guy who I had only met the day before (thankfully, NOT one of my life’s themes) who was going to be our “guide”.
Then, in the middle of the night, I felt something. Something bumped my head and brushed through my hair as my neighbor rustled around in the bed.
I forgot to mention Configuration 5, aka “The Bed Hog”. It is also completely unacceptable, for obvious reasons:
But, this wasn’t a true Configuration 5. So my brain—once again trying to make things make sense—says to me, “Well, maybe he’s going for a Modified 4?” I did feel something playing with my hair, after all.
I was beginning to distrust my new friend, to say the least.
Also, this was the 10-year anniversary of one time me and a different Guy I Didn’t Know ended up staying in a hotel room together (wait, maybe this IS a theme…). We flipped a coin for the bed, and the other guy got the couch. Halfway through the trip, we agreed to switch. Well, the first night of The Switch, guess who “forgot” to get in the right bed after he’d gotten up to pee in the middle of the night?
It wasn’t me, by the way. To be fair, we had been drinking A LOT of beer that night, and we were both fairly sleep deprived. I “pushed” him off my bed with my feet—thanks once again to my Super Ninja Military Sleep Defense Training.
We didn’t talk about it the next day.
And that, kids, is why you never drink beer. Because it’ll make you gay… or something….
Anyhow, thanks to my pile of emotional baggage involving Sleep Trauma, I was beginning to distrust my new friend.
Well, my Super Ninja Military Sleep Defense Training was already kicking in, and as my leg began to activate Defense Move Number One, I realized that my “friend” wasn’t actually the culprit. Big surprise.
Apparently, I’m quite popular in the rodent community. Word has gotten around. Unfortunately, this was a huge rat, and not a mouse. I backhanded him off my pillow, and as he ran under my door, I figured out why there was a gap there.
And then as all good soldiers do, I went back to sleep. I DID NOT roll over this time. That would be a Configuration 4 Violation.
Unfortunately, I opened my eyes a few minutes later, and saw this on the bedside table:
I went into Full Attack Mode, and the rat went back under the door. Utilizing my Super Ninja Military Sleep Defense Training, I put my shoe in front of the hole, and wedged it there with… I don’t know… a standard issue book or something.
The rest of the night was spent in fits as the Rat Department of Transportation attempted to unblock their road. The next morning, my hard-sleeping, yet Configuration 2-loving, new friend said, “Dude, what the heck was wrong with you last night?” I don’t think he believed me, and he probably has a blog of his own about me now.