We’ve all had that dream. You know the one. You’re out in public, maybe at work or the mall, and you suddenly realize that you have forgotten some integral piece of your wardrobe. For some reason our sleeping brain doesn’t tell us “Hey! You must be dreaming – you always remember pants!” We are doomed to embarrassment until we finally wake and realize none of it ever happened.
But what if it DID happen? Adult sleepwalking (more technically called somnambulism) is on the rise, and many of the contributing factors such as stress, alcohol consumption, and late-night meals, are quite common to travelers.
While a relatively safe sleepwalking situation can lead to a hilarious story later on (for instance, my 9 year old son ran from his room a few nights ago in a frantic search for where his brother had left the “fire boosters”), it is also a cause for serious concern (this same child was caught escaping the house at 2am, also while sleeping.)
Adult sleepwalkers have been found wandering their hotels in the nude, asking for newspapers and even trying to go to work. For the sleepwalker, the potential for embarrassment is frightening enough, but the possibility for injury or even death while sleepwalking is obviously a serious concern for everyone.
So what is a night auditor to do? My short list of suggestions comes from scouring the internet and personal experience, so please feel free to leave your own suggestions in the comments below.
What steps does your hotel take to safeguard nocturnal wanderers?