There are no happy endings … unless … Well, if you want something so badly, there might be the chance, it’s going to end badly …
‘ … and they lived happily ever after.’
That’s not real, that’s how books end.
Peter put the book onto the table.
In real life, things don’t stop there. There is always something else coming up. There is always the next day.
Speaking of which, it was already running late. In fact, it was late, 24 minutes past midnight and the clock still ticking. Tomorrow it would be a regular work day and the alarm clock would ring merciless at six sharp. No point in denying that. It would be best to retire for the night. Better said then done. Some nights sleep wouldn’t come that easy and pure logic wouldn’t help either.
Five and a half hours sleep wouldn’t be perfect, but the next say would still be doable. However, most probably it wouldn’t come to that, more likely four.
Peter switched off the light and went for it …
Random thoughts kept popping up in Peter’s mind. It was like carrying small boxes from one corner of the room to another and then yet to another and back to the first corner. Pointless.
And so would be sleeping on the back. His own snoring would wake him up in the end.
It was 12:43 a.m. by now. He knew, he could never sleep on the right side, but it could help for starters.
Not today, though. Music – music would work sometimes. He turned on the music player on his phone …
‘All my bags are packed, I’m ready to go
I’m standing here outside your door
I hate to wake you up to say goodbye …’
Maybe turn down the volume a bit.
‘There’s so many times I’ve let you down
So many times I’ve played around
I tell you now, they don’t mean a thing …’
That could actually work … in combination with turning to the left side and reducing the volume yet a bit more. Well, it would still take a bit of time …
‘You can throw your hands up, you can beat the clock
You can move a mountain, you can break rocks
Some will call that practice, some will call that luck
But either way your going to the history books …’
For sure it will work. The only thing is, at one point you wake up again, because you are annoyed by the music and you have to turn it off. Then you can sleep for good …
That was, when her face appeared again …
Then of course there are the regular trips to the loo. An advertisement of a company selling mattresses once claimed, if you have their mattress, you could finish a six pack of beer before bedtime and could still sleep through the entire night. Peter was tempted once to try it, but then suddenly remembered he had never bought that mattress.
BEEP BEEP BEEP … 6 o’clock. Ah, another 10 minutes wouldn’t do any harm, would they?
Why not even 10 more minutes. That couldn’t be bad, could it?
On the other hand, 20 more minutes sleep wouldn’t help much either. No chance, time to get up. Loo first.
Now some exercise. No matter how short the night would be, Peter had always scheduled some time for morning exercise. However, moving 100 kg isn’t that easy. So, if three minutes leave you breathless, then that’s what it’s going to be. One day all this hard work will pay off. Not now, though.
Washing off the night, getting dressed and then breakfast.
Peter put on the kettle and two slices of toast went to the toaster. After a while the machine would repay him with some golden brown slices of toast with a smiley on each one. Peter had thought that might sheer him up every morning. Did it work?
One with cheese and one with jam together with a cup of tea. A few drops of milk in the tea were obligatory.
No need to read the newspaper – no happy endings there, either.
That meant the breakfast wouldn’t take that long. After all, Peter didn’t need any time for the tea to cool down. He was able to drink it as hot as it came from the kettle, more or less. Maybe that is not healthy, but Peter didn’t care. There were other things that weren’t healthy either.
Brushing teeth was the only thing left to do before leaving for the office. There was another chance for exercise. Peter had heard of an exercises he could do while brushing teeth, standing on just one food and trying to keep the balance. He wasn’t very good in that. It would improve, one day. For the last month, though, there was no improvement. Anyway, that exercise had to be good for something. You’ll never know, if you don’t try.
Time to leave for work. Peter left the house and went to his car. It was a bit nippy today.
Have I locked the door?
Peter went back to check whether he had locked the door of his flat.
Are all the windows closed?
Peter unlocked the door and went back inside to check all the windows. After he made sure twice. He left again, locked the door again, checked again whether it was really locked and then got into his car.
Are all the windows really closed? Ah, I think, I chance it today.
The drive to the office was relaxed most of the time. The rush hour didn’t have any effect on Peter. Most of the other cars were going in the opposite direction. Presumably Peter did something right here. So it was quite safe for him to let his mind wander …
So, what are we having for dinner tonight? Ah, Mexican would be lovely, didn’t have that one in a while … Oh, isn’t there still some chilli sauce in the fridge. Fine, I have some tortillas wrapped with fresh guacamole … If I can get a nice avocado … Ah, and with mushrooms and cheese – lots of cheese. Yes, that will be delish …
Red traffic light. Stop. Now. No problem.
The force is strong in you. That light should turn green now.
Green! Peter continued his trip to the office …
Anything for pudding? Nah, maybe not today, but I should definitely get some chocolate bars. I think, I have run out of those.
Peter was the first in the office. That wasn’t anything unusual. It would, if it be any different. Now at least for an hour he could work in peace. Well, Khan would show up next, but he isn’t much of a talker, if you don’t trigger him and Ted wouldn’t show up before nine, unless a miracle would happen.
The desk was heavily loaded with work. It took only three or four projects in order to accomplish that. Peter was some kind of writer, but usually not many would read it. Who reads a manual anyway, you simply unpack the electronics, connect it and somehow figure things out on your own. Still, who would be buy that junk anyway – things the world doesn’t need. Does anyone care for a toaster with integrated Internet radio and text-to-toast function. You can control things with a free smartphone app. It would be outrageous, if it wasn’t for free. That would only be a matter of time until they charge extra for it, maybe firstly only for the premium version, but in the end you would have a monthly subscription in order to use the app.
Peter turned on the computer and the hard disk roared to action. Apparently that would take some time, especially with windows needing to process those 30 sudden updates – daily – it downloaded yesterday. This could only mean one thing: time for the first coffee. At home it would always be tea, but at work, Peter was set to coffee mode.
Khan had arrived, while Peter had gone to the office kitchen to fetch a cup of coffee.
“Morning, nice to see you, Khan.”
Khan wasn’t much for the use of words, at least not now. So time to enter the password, check some useless emails and then on with the day’s work.
The coffee wasn’t any help fighting this sleep deprivation. You can especially notice that when you start scrolling down in your text and suddenly find yourself 20 pages further down than you originally intended. The fact that work today was more boring than usual contributed on the negative time.
Ted was in the office. That wasn’t a new record in being late and apart from ‘cerveza’ there were no more words Ted could master in Spanish.
He showed similar symptoms of sleep withdrawal than Peter, but for totally different reasons. However, that seemed to be good. Maybe Ted will be a bit more quiet today. After all, firstly Ted needed to have his breakfast and with a little luck they would make it safely until 10:00 a.m. when they would have their team meeting … if you could call that team. You could rather call it meeting of uselessness. Sean would be telling everyone the things they needed to do, which they already knew and, if they wouldn’t have that stupid meeting, would be doing. Well, maybe Sean would have some extra jobs to get rid of some things he himself didn’t want to do – almost everything.
Apart from the usual annoying things, the day at work went by without any incidents.
Peter had a little chat with Carol, the girl at the front desk – work related, of course. Carol was a sweet and lovely person and it for sure was no punishment having to have something to do with her.
At the end of the day – despite of the previous night – Peter could be satisfied with his work output and wasn’t ashamed to leave the office exactly on time.
Luckily, everyone was going in the opposite direction again. A quick stop at the supermarket to get some mushrooms, avocado and chocolate bars and Peter was again in the safety of his home.
Now he could prepare his dinner the same way as he already imagined on his way to work.
RING RING. The phone rang. RING RING.
No time for that now.
Peter chose to ignore the phone. RING RING. After all he was cooking and didn’t want to interrupt that. RING RING. The phone would stop in time. In fact it just did that.
Usually the phone is ringing, because someone wants something from you, not just because someone like to hear your pleasant voice. I’m not in the mood for that right now and … I have no time anyway.
From then on everything went smoothly. The person who tried to phone Peter didn’t try again and dinner tasted just as he had expected it would, lovely.
What now? What to do with the rest of the day. There were still a few hours left. On the other hand, Peter didn’t have that much sleep last night. So he could have an early night in for a change.
He placed himself and turned on the telly. Oh, another episode of Top Gear. After a few minutes it was evident, he had seen that one already. It didn’t matter …
Oh, what is Vin Diesel doing in that episode of Top Gear? Well, he is not going around that track. What about all those explosions.
Then Peter noticed, it was already dark outside. He had dozed away and woken up a few hours later. Obviously the program had changed. He decided, it would really be the best now to go to bed. So he turned off the television and got ready for the night.