I moved to The Algarve area because it is the warmest part of Portugal. After 30 years in Florida, I was not ready to brave any winter that was characterized as, well, winter. The code word is “mild,” but mild is relative.
It was a colder winter this past year, with night temperatures going down to the low 40s and daytime temps sometimes not making it up to 60. (I could give you that in Celsius, but why?)
Now, I know all my Massachusetts family and friends are saying, “Are you shittin’ me? That’s wicked warm!”
No, it’s not.
Especially without central heat.
Lest you think I have none of my hearty New England stock left in me, it really wasn’t all that cold. Just a bit uncomfortable.
But now things have warmed up and for the next six months or so, I’ll enjoy some Florida temperatures with less humidity. But that’s not the best part.
Unlike Florida, the temperatures actually cool off at night which gives some nice relief and affords a bit of a reset. It’s not cool, but you don’t feel like a piece of corned beef steaming in cabbage.
Sleeping when it’s hot is just not comfortable. You can sleep on top of the bedding, but I like at least a sheet over me. And there’s always that point in the night where you are cold and reach for something to cover you. If you’re on top of it, there will be thrashing.
But, there’s a hack.
One Leg Can Be Magic
If menopause taught me anything, it is the magic of sticking one leg out. Just one short bit of leg is enough to make my entire body cool down and I drift back to sleep.
Turns out, feet are an exit point for heat from our body. (Who knew?) That’s why sticking your leg out from under the covers can cool you off. (And wearing socks to bed in the winter helps keep you warm.)
But that one leg can do more.
Stop the Spins
You ever had that one glass of wine too many? (Or three?) For me, it was the second chocolate martini. I didn’t even finish it. (Scotch, I can drink. Chocolate martinis… not so much.) You’re so tired, all you want to do is go to bed and sleep it off. You gulp down some Ibuprofen with a big glass of water (not our first rodeo), close your eyes and…
The room starts spinning.
Noooooo! I JUST WANT TO SLEEP!
Alcohol is a dominatrix, not a willing mistress. And the spins are the deluxe package.
Ah, but that magical one leg.
Out goes the leg, finding firm footing on the floor. Not the most comfortable way to sleep, but it somehow stabilizes you and stops the spinning. Or at least slows it down enough for you to get to sleep.
It’s good to know my university fees weren’t wasted.
For the record, putting one foot on the floor will not help with seasickness. Your momma can’t help you and the Captain ain’t turning the ship around. Have a cracker. Actually, take Dramamine. BEFORE you get seasick. It doubles as a knock-out drug. There’s a reason the crew hands it out like candy.
But Not Throw a Leg Over!
Now, there may be some magic in throwing a leg over, as unmagic as that phrase is, but it is definitely not going to help you sleep. Well, now that I think about it, you usually sleep fairly soundly after, so sure, let’s throw that leg into the leg mix.
You can get a leg up, pull someone’s leg, have a hollow leg (see the spins, above), spend an arm and a leg, and not have a leg to stand on. But having that one leg out of the covers, creates its own bit of magic when you’re trying to sleep.
And it all works very well until some cheerful someone, knocks on your door and tells you to “show a leg” or “shake a leg.”
That’s a suggestion that has no legs.