Why is sobremesa so important?

The other day, it was a Sunday almost like any other: we had gotten together for a copious Winter lunch with friends. The only difference was that the kids had been invited to a birthday party and we had to rush off sooner than later; not something we usually like to do on Sundays, but it was for a good cause. So we decided to meet our friends much earlier than usual and try to stretch out the cooking and eating part as much as our schedule allowed. Weekend lunches are a lazy affair, however, and after our stomachs were contently stuffed we found ourselves having to get up and go without having enjoyed a full Spanish sobremesa, my favorite part of the meal. Go figure, I had a stomachache all afternoon long! I am sure it was because I did not allow my body and soul the relaxed, comforting digestive time at table it likes to have, especially on Sundays. Sobremesa is a serious affair.