Driving back to land of nod

Every week I buy one hour of sleep behind the wheel. 

My little mate, though, pushes out Zzzs, and I enjoy remarkable scenery country roads afford.

In my house, sleep is the new awake.

It’s teething, or family’s over, or it’s sugar. They’ve missed the window, they’re sulking Donald Trump’s US president but they have more hair. Insert dummy-spit here.

Sometimes the daily attempt to coax, plead or simply cheat babies into lying down eyes closed tries too much on the soul. 

Thank all that is holy for car rides. Since the dawn of time, rocking and a constant speed has nursed even the most possessed of Devil’s spawn to slumber.

Well, since Karl Benz and Henry Ford built the first cars to get their tiny revheads to bed.

It’s not ideal. Little mate stretched out in his cot is best. 

But most Fridays I take him to the park and, after slides and climbing up stairs and saturation from standing under water fountains, eyelids drop and body sags against clipped-in straps. 

Put him in the cot? Never.

The mere thought of stirring little mate and limiting him to a micro-sleep strikes absolute terror.

Those power naps energise him for hours and to one big crash, but not before hissy fits that would render crossbench senators mad. 

So I drive. Along a windy avenue of honour dotted with elms, their bare branches swaying overhead.

Past hectares of fields with the brightest of golden canola. Around hills pristine and emerald green. 

Through villages, with town halls of heritage and bluestone and perhaps the odd microbrewery or craft cider shop. To lakes with waves brushed up off a breeze.

Our country sleep trail is never a bad one to follow.

Chris O’Leary