One of my requirements for a purse is that it is big enough to hold a book. I have this requirement because I’m always in the middle of three or four books and hope to snag a minute or two of downtime and get a few more pages read. When Fred and I go on a road trip, he drives and I read until I fall asleep.* I’ll mute the commercials on TV just so I can read. Of course, this is a bit more difficult, trying to keep two separate plots straight in my head, so I don’t do it too much. Stuck in traffic? Not a problem! I just whip out my book and start reading.
But the other night I was at Fred’s house with no reading material of my own. I didn’t think this would be a problem, until I woke up at 5:30 in the morning, hacking and sneezing and unable to get back to sleep. Usually when I wake up and I’m a bit restless, I read a few pages and it lulls me back to sleep.** Fred doesn’t own many books because he prefers not to own many material possessions, unlike me. What few books he does own either don’t interest me or I’ve already read. So, I did the next best thing: I played on the Wii.
My tired eyes stared at the big, bright screen as I urged Mario on to save Princess Peach. It wasn’t until I stopped to go to the bathroom that I realized that it was 9. Hours had been wasted away for some game when I could have been laughing along at Jen Lancaster’s misadventures or learned the history of Facebook. Or, at the very least, read until I was able to sleep again. But because of my little oversight of carrying one of two purses that I own that are too small for a book, I was sucked into a vortex of time-wasting. This has happened before, when I’ve forgotten to take a book with me and I’ve regretted it. But it was never to this magnitude. Usually I just lose a few minutes, at most a half an hour. But this time I lost hours. Hopefully I’ll learn and remember that I should always take a book with me, wherever I go. Always.
*For some reason, riding in cars makes me sleepy. Ten minutes in and I’m out like a light.
**Playing games on my iPod also works but I didn’t have that either.