Carlo nearly fell in love with the woman who made him fall asleep. For ten years he had been unable to get more than two hours of fitful slumber, and as a result had earned a not inconsiderable reputation as the "poet laureate of the Latin American nocturnal epic", along with a reasonable income as a novelist of passionate, all-night trysts between bored, unhappily bonded intellectuals. The secret was melatonin pills, given to him by a lady of indeterminate Middle-Eastern origin, also an insomniac, who smoked too much and whose kisses tasted of raspberries and garlic. After the first 24 hours of non-stop dreaming he was ready to profess his undying affections. Unfortunately she could only sleep in the pitch dark and deathly silence she'd experienced as a sickly child in the Persian ghettos and he, sadly, snored. Still, he was able finally to return to his family business and fortune: coffee-growing in the Colombian hills.