I’m not sure how long I’ve been awake, but realize it only when I hear the surf’s low roar in the distance through the window I opened yesterday just to get a bit of cool air in the room, then forgot about. It’s not quite chilly, but I’d rather it be shut. The short, quiet whistle just outside has me wondering who the someone is out there, his dog down the street farther than necessary at this time of night. It’s a bit creepy.
The clock reads 3:26 am, and I give in to the idea that even though it’s too quiet to run the coffee grinder or too dark to go for a walk, I decide to sit here to pass the time. And because I’ve already thought about everything there is to think about before I decided to get out of bed, I wonder why I’m making an effort to write any of this, tempted instead to fumble my way down the stairs in the dark, pick up the book I just started last night and read for a while. The only problem is, no light is strong enough downstairs to read with. This makes me realize it wouldn’t be a problem if I’d transitioned completely to Kindle which I only recently downloaded to my iPad. Somehow, the idea bothers me because I still like the look and feel of a book — especially fiction. But that doesn’t help me much, sitting here in the dark and wanting something to do.
I watch the stream of Tweets on TweetDeck with little interest, but hesitate to close it since it’s not distracting me — as if that’s possible. My brain feels empty, which means I really should be sleeping. Or perhaps I am asleep and just haven’t figured it out yet. This would be a fairly boring dream if that was the case. Imagine.
No, the ache at the base of my skull isn’t something I’d dream about. Gently, I shift my head from one side to the next, feeling the muscles in my neck stretch. It feels good, and so I extend the stretch down each of my sides, elbows up, slowly pulling, taking a slow, deep breath. Much better.
A lone bird has chirped somewhere outside and the first car headed down the hill. I wonder who it is and what time work begins, glad I am not that person, but remember briefly having to get up this early to go to work myself for several years. I remember enjoying the quiet as I readied myself, shutting the front door quietly as I left each morning, all the people I loved still tucked in their beds, some snoring.
I think about what I’ve decided to do today after the sun has risen, committed to heading down the boardwalk to get some exercise. When we first moved here, as much as I wanted to sleep in on the weekends, I’d wake, pull on my sweats and drive down to walk on the beach. It was a novelty then and I enjoyed breathing in the salty, damp air as I walked along not having to dodge the bikes and skateboards normally crowding the boardwalk. Yes, I’ll enjoy that this morning, and while I’m walking, I’ll decide whether or not to make Christmas cookies this year. The MoH and I certainly don’t need cookies around the house, but I saw some great new recipes in Bon Appetit’s holiday baking spread this year and am tempted, knowing if I procrastinate long enough, it will be too late, and then I’ll be saved from the task. We’ll see.
It’s 5:05 am, and I’ve successfully filled time more than space here, not really focusing on anything. Lizzie’s followed me up here at some point and is curled on the futon behind me. I get up for a minute to pet her, listening to her purr. I peer between the blinds, surprised to see a still dark sky, and yawn.
Should I go back to bed or risk the coffee grinder? Waste time pinning pretty things to my Pinterest boards? Paper, scissors, rock.
I’m chilled to the bone now, my head still hurts, and the stuffy nose I’m just now realizing is the culprit for my being awake is annoying me.
It’s an admirable 5:31 am.