I wake several times in the night. I often wake about four o’clock; I have to get up to start my day at about five during the week, about five-thirty on weekends. When I wake at four, I can usually fall asleep again without trouble, and gain advantage from the hour remaining. When I wake at four-thirty or so, I have difficulty returning to sleep, probably because my mind, knowing how close it is to the moment I must rise, anticipates being roused by the alarm, and keeps wondering when it will go off.
This preamble sets the stage for Sunday morning. I woke at four o’clock and, realizing that I had another ninety minutes or so in which to sleep, drifted back into unconsciousness. I was woken abruptly forty-five minutes later by a metallic clang. I am sure it wasn’t part of my dream, as much as I am sure it did not originate from outside. Something had fallen, or was pushed, inside the apartment. I got up and searched, but found nothing out of the ordinary. All was as it should have been.
The cats looked innocent of any wrong-doing. In fact, they appeared surprised that I was up so early, and wandering about the apartment in the twilight before dawn. Nothing seemed to have dropped onto the floor; there was no debris; all was in its place. I think Josie even suggested that I was hearing things. I went back to bed but - the time being so close to when I had to rise - I could not regain my slumbers, and lie awake for another half-hour. Cammie thought it a good moment to come and lie on my head.
I still haven’t discovered what made the noise or, almost as significant, who made it. But I have thoughts on the subject. Here are the usual suspects…