I was fast asleep when my husband came in to the bedroom to kiss me goodbye. He woke me up briefly as he was leaning over the bed and I felt Archie stir at my feet too.
‘See ya,’ he said, and kissed me goodbye.
I let my head sink back on to the pillow. I knew without looking at the clock that it would be around twenty past five in the morning, but that was OK. It was Saturday and after a hectic week at work, I could finally relax. I felt myself start to drift back off to sleep almost immediately. I don’t even remember hearing the front flyscreen door slam, which it always does just after 5:30 am when my husband leaves because I was already falling back asleep.
Archie decided for some reason that he did not approve of this drift. As I lay on my side, slipping away, I felt him shift at my feet and then march up the length of my body’s profile until he was sitting on my shoulders. Just as I was about to sink under, he let out a loud and insistent bark.
‘Go to sleep, dog,’ I thought. ‘It is Saturday.’ I felt him lie down on me and started the slow descent back to my dream.
Then something caught my mind by a corner.
Was it Saturday? Was I sure?
I thought back to the day before. Yes of course, yesterday had been Friday. There had been a morning tea at the office for one girl who was leaving and another who was going on a big trip. I settled back again.
‘But,’ my mind asked just as I was relaxing, ‘If yesterday was Friday evening, why was I not at my parents’ house?’
Every week I visit them on a Friday, although the Friday before had been an exception as I had just got back from Melbourne. How could this be possible? How could I have simply sat at home and forgotten to go and see them?
Anxiety bubbled up inside me as I ran over the events of the day trying to work out how I could have made such a mistake and why my mother had not called me to ask where I was.
Guilt pulled my conscious mind like a fish hook slowly up to the surface. I lay with my eyes still shut but my mind perfectly awake, trying to work this out. It was like a time puzzle. I seemed to have lost an entire 24 hours.
I rolled onto my other side dislodging Archie as I did and slowly opened my eyes. It was just gone quarter to and as I made out the figures on the clock the final piece of the puzzle slid into place.
It was Friday, not Saturday.
My memory of the morning tea was correct but had happened on Thursday, which is why I was able to sit at home that evening free of concern over not visiting my parents, because they had not been expecting me. I had another full day of work ahead of me before the weekend. I looked at the clock, it said 5:50 am.
Things were not so bad after all. Before I realised my mistake, I had already given myself a full free day off in those ten minutes and it looked as though I had another ten to do with as I wished.
I closed my eyes. With any luck I could fit Sunday in too before the alarm went off at six.