Rip Van Winkle is a fantastic tale written by Washington Irving, who is commonly and deservingly reputed to be the father of American Literature. But a short story, it has become infamous, echoing through generations past. To tell the story, Irving used his creation, Diedrich Knickerbocker, the supposed writer of 'History of New York'. The introduction of Rip Van Winkle states that the story was found among his papers after Knickerbocker's death. What a story it is! Any summary will not do Irving's work justice. I highly suggest reading the piece to anyone who hasn't.
In the beginning, Rip is willing to tend to all responsibilities but his own. Dame Van Winkle is surely not content with this, hence he becomes subjected to constant nagging. One of few possibilites, taking his adherent dog into the woods affords him the time he needs to relax. One day he falls asleep and wakes up years later to find that everything is different. Not only has his life changed, but it has done so for the better.
Rip Van Winkle much further enjoyed the new life he woke up to in the story. In life, it's those extraordinary changes time and work will bring. Sleep simply let that pass much faster and effortlessly for the lucky old man. What a dream to have.