I take my glass of port and venture out the front door to brave the steps. I don't go out at night very often, because it's seldom as quiet as I'd like -- there are the sounds of the switchyard, half a mile away, but the muffled booms and bangs and the soft clang of the reversing bell don't so much bother me, it's just industry. But there's also the seasick pitch of an argument in the distance; outdoors it seems (pity the neighbors), a strident woman's voice, half-angry, half-pleading. Occasionally obscured by the train noises. And there's a young man in a big car driving away from the neighbor's house after midnight; and the jarring percussion of a garbage can lid clapping down, of a door slammed to close it tightly. I hear the people still awake, many more of them than I think should be after midnight, and there's not much peace to find on the front steps.
My kid walks in his sleep. Just a little while ago I heard him calling me, conversationally; I found him attempting to pee in a dresser drawer. Guiding him to the toilet, he wakes and begins to whimper. I speak to him, and he shushes me. "Don't say anything!" He's alarmed at finding himself in the bathroom, but it's not the first time. He's embarrassed I think. And really he just doesn't want to be awake.
I know the feeling. But I can't lay down yet, or I'll still be laying there awake an hour from now. I have to be exhausted. Gotta hit that window.