Sleepy people
© Flickr/Tinou Bao
Not residents of Kalachi, but very sleepy people nonetheless.
Residents of a small village in Kazakhstan are falling asleep at random, sometimes for days at a time, and no one knows why. Since the spring of 2013, the village of Kalachi in the Akmolinsk district (whose name derives from aqmola, a Kazakh term that ominously translates to the white tomb), 150 miles south of the Russian border, has suffered from at least four outbreaks of the disorder. As of the latest wave, from late August to early September, over 60 people, or 10 percent of the town's population of 680 had been affected. Last week, RT released a documentary on the problem titled Sleepy Hallow, Kazakhstan. Locals told the reporters that they fear one day they'll fall asleep and never wake up again.

Classified as an encephalopathy of unclear origin - the highfalutin term for a weird brain disorder we can't figure out - villagers who do not simply keel over while moving or working report feeling weakness, dizziness, and memory and motor control loss. At least two children have reported hallucinations as well: Misha Plyukhin saw flying horses and light bulbs, his mother with eight eyes and a trunk, and snakes and worms in his bed, trying to eat his arms; Rudolf Boyarinos cannot remember his visions, but four people had to calm and subdue him as he screamed "monsters!" The sleep is so deep that some locals fear an old man they assumed was dead could have been buried alive.