Vallarta Culture: The Siesta
One of our favorite and greatest habits that have been confirmed while living in Mexico is that “only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.” It validates our position on how important the power nap is to a good physical existence. Before our current residency in Puerto Vallarta, we confused ambition with folly and seemed driven to prove our success. One does not need to become a slave to one’s own aspirations to maintain grand achievements. Relaxation is endemic among the successful. Several reports indicate that those who nap have less risk of heart attack and it’s the smart choice as a way tour extend social life and enjoy holidays evenings.
Studies have shown that Mexicans and Japanese are the hardest working cultures, putting to bed the image of a large belly under a sombrero sleeping beneath a cactus. Therefore, the siesta should never be viewed as a symbol of laziness but one of intelligent and healthy behavior. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) claims that Mexicans devote an average of ten hours per day to paid and unpaid work. The siesta has been around since the beginning of time, when smart people in hot climates, such as Puerto Vallarta, sleep through the hottest part of the day and eat a light dinner in the cool evening hours, after the sun has gone down.
The word siesta comes from the Latin hora sexta, which means the six hour. In a more reasonable era a day actually began at dawn, making the sixth hour noon, a perfect time to have a rest and collect one’s thoughts, following what should be the grandest meal of the day. Practiced in the Mediterranean and the South of Europe (riposo in Italy), as well as the Philippines and much of Latin America, it is common for businesses to close, giving both proprietors and guests a chance to stay at home, have a long and hearty lunch, and a well deserved rest. Siesta is not limited to countries with warm climates; many locations in South America, such as Patagonia, make it a practice.
When homeostatic sleep and circadian rhythms, the subjects of sleep, are the topic of talk shows and scientific studies, we know we have made the correct choice of living in the paradise we find in Puerto Vallarta.
Que es cómo es.
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