When I was in kindergarten, we pulled out blue mats after lunch.
I wasn't a napper and had a lot of anxiety over having to sleep at school. My mom talked with the teacher, and as long as I played quietly, I could lay on my mat until the others awoke.
I remember watching each friend drift off to sleep, some with drips of drool that would drop from the edge of their mouth to a little pool below.
Some of my friends would get hot and sweaty and some even made soft, bellowing sounds that would make their hair sway from the frame of their face with every deep breath.
I watched in amazement as each napping soldier would wake within minutes of each other until we all swarmed the classroom again with a buzz of a hornet's nest.
On weekends, my mother enjoyed the midday ritual as she'd quietly announce, "I'm just going to go lay down for a little while." Sure enough within the hour, she would rise and make her coffee, energized.
Never mind that I was a night owl and would sleep until the early afternoon if you let me. Naps seemed like they were a waste, or only for old people, which might explain why I love them now.
I get almost a giddy excitement if I find a window of opportunity to climb between the sheets and snore into bliss while the sun is still on full duty.
And I must admit, during summer, I sometimes indulge in more than a power nap if time permits.
Once again, I resort to what I used to love best ... stay up until the wee hours and sleep in.
I know not everyone can get in their midday naps within the work week but many enjoy them during weekends.
The "siesta" derives from "the sixth hour," counting from dawn so it tends to be around noon. Spain and many Latin American countries influenced the masses to take on this traditional short nap.
Even in Slovenia, particularly among the elderly, there's the "house rule" where it is common to respect no calls or visitors between the hours of 2 and 5 p.m.
Almost all schools in Mainland China and Taiwan have what's called "wujiao," which is a half-hour nap period right after lunch.
And some Japanese offices have special napping rooms for workers during their lunch breaks.
In Islam, it's encouraged to take a nap between Dhuhr (midday) and Asr (afternoon.)
Research shows that you can make yourself more alert, reduce stress and improve brain functioning with a nap. So let's hear a big hurrah for scientists and a cheer (clink of wine glasses, with red inside, of course) to good health.
Studies show that 20 minutes of sleep in the afternoon provides more rest than 20 minutes more sleep in the morning. The body craves this, as most people’s bodies naturally become more tired in the afternoon, about eight hours after we wake up.
So, listen, I'm just trying to go with what the experts say.
And let me add that two other powerful nuggets of knowledge influence my love for naps: Everything I need to know I learned in kindergarten and sometimes Mom knows best.