Waking up is difficult for many. The blaring alarm bears much abuse and comes in many forms. When I started incorporating musical alarms into my dreams, I contemplated getting one of those puzzle alarms. Solve a math problem or chase the clock in order to make the sound stop! That seems like a miserable experience. I switched to loud, obnoxious beeps instead. And my dog is well-trained to accept the cacophonous repetition brought on by the snooze button. Of course I sleep with my dog; don’t be ridiculous.
The best way I’ve been woken up is by hearing my neighbor practice the acoustic guitar. Even strumming chords or practicing patterns does it for me. The best reason I’ve been woken up (so far) is to go watch a rare and fully-loaded meteor shower.
This morning was not on the best list.
I fell asleep knowing I needed to wake up to leave for the airport so that I would arrive at the check-in counter at approximately 4:00 am. I was going to Mexico for a wedding, and had an early flight. I had originally planned to arrive at the airport at 3:30 am, but I thought the half hour difference wouldn’t make much of a difference. 3 alarms were set, and I tried to make myself fall asleep early. Inevitably, I fell asleep at the same time I usually do, and had a slight worry in the back of my mind that I wouldn’t wake up at the right time.
My bedroom door opened suddenly, and my father said “Are you awake yet? You’re going to be late!” I sat up straight as a bolt, and was deeply disoriented. Suddenly, my torso was perpendicular to my bed instead of parallel, and that seemed so wrong. So very wrong. My dog was thrilled to see my father, and jumped out of bed. I was mixed in thoughts between “dear god, what time is it?” and “but Maggie, we haven’t cuddled yet.” I could only stammer out words and sounds. Dad said “don’t you have to be at the airport by 3:30?” Ah. So I didn’t tell him I changed my plans. Ugh, was it really 2:30? I was missing out on half an hour of precious sleep? But how nice that he woke up to make sure I was up! I continued to try to communicate amidst my fuzzy waking up confusion, and was apparently successful because my dad left with the dog.
I tried lying down again until my alarm went off, but I was still jarred by the suddenness of waking. I got up, and arrived at the airport a little before 4:00 am. 10 minutes before the checkout counter was even open. And I proceeded to the security line… 10 minutes before it was open. Then I went to the United Club (even though it was not a United flight), but got there 20 minutes before it opened.
By this time, I was punch drunk with excitement for my trip, but tired of being too early for every little thing. I was also just generally tired. As I got into the United Club, I learned that the bar opened in another 2 hours. Not that I like drinking at 5:00am, but time was ticking by at a particularly slow pace. Also, my earliness was becoming increasingly annoying.
Did I mention that my flight was delayed 2 and a half hours?
Well, it’s true. The connecting flight was also delayed. We arrived at our final destination over 3 hours late. I don’t mean to overly kvetch – this was a very long way to start a journey!
Despite my tiredness, boredom and frustration, my first alcoholic drink of the day was during the 9 am beverage service after takeoff. If someone wakes up significantly before the crack of dawn, 9 am is a lot like noon so I didn’t feel like a lush. The vodka and orange juice was downright refreshing. In my estimation, my seat had been in the upright position since 2:30 am. I was so ready.
Time for a nap.
— Your huckleberry