My evening of shut-eye last night commenced in the downstairs recliner, watching an episode of House Hunters. I didn't even see which house the hunters picked. So it must have been around 9:50 when I dozed off. At 1:00, I woke up to go to bed.
When I got upstairs, I first had to lay out clothes for
It took a little while to fall asleep, what with acclimatizing myself to the under-pillow arm-rooting and back-of-neck breather-spraying of Hick. But once I did, I was deep in sleep, having a dream of The Pony driving a bronze-colored Ford Aerostar van, taking my parking space that was saved for me at my old junior high school, and hitting the brakes (like the front brakes on a 10-speed bicycle) so that the rear end of that van flew up in the air.
"HELLO!" Let the record show that the phone is on Val's side of the bed. On the far edge of her nightstand, so that she must get completely out of bed to answer it.
"This is Central Station calling about an alarm at The Workplace of Hick..."
"Here he is. HEY! PHONE!"
Hick turned off his breather and grabbed the phone. "Yes. Yes. We have a bird in that building. The police can check the outside, but I'm not coming in until 6:00. I'll check the inside then."
Let the record show that this bird has been a fly in Hick's ointment for many years. Almost since they moved out of the old Red Cross building and into their current building. About 15 years ago. It's probably a 15th generation of the original bird. They fly around and set off the electric eye that triggers the burglar alarm. Schools have the same problem, only it's not birds, but kids' work falling off the wall in the hall.
Let the record further show that the time of that call was 2:59 a.m.
I went back to sleep, building a barricade of Grandma quilt between the right side of my face and the breathered breath of Hick.
That was the giant left ham-arm of Hick thwacking across my upper abdomen. Like a hunter under attack trying to fend off a grizzly bear on a remote island in the Alaskan Panhandle during the salmon run. Like a hitchhiker thumping the side of a Chevy Silverado after hopping out on the highway shoulder, signaling the driver that he was clear of the pickup, and thanks for the ride. Like a small-time embezzler resisting the amorous advances of his new cellie on his first night in the federal penitentiary.
"Why did you do THAT?"
"It's about time for the alarm to go off."
"Funny. I kind of like to wait until the alarm actually goes off. It's 4:44. I have six more minutes. But I'll never get back to sleep now."
"I thought the alarm went off. I heard someone say, 'Are you awake?' I heard a voice."
"Well, now I'M awake."
I would have had more rest if I had not gone to bed at all.