Sunday, 27 May 2012

Strange in the Night

Big day tomorrow, so I reluctantly make my excuses and retire to my luscious accommodation.  I’m in bed and asleep by ten-thirty, which is unlike me, so it’s no surprise that I wake up at about half past three.  It’s not just that though: I’m woken by a sound.  Sounds are unusual round here.  The silence kept me awake at first.

It sounds like a dog barking.  Who?  Who who who.”  The number of who’s varying between three and, I decide, eleven.  I discount this theory though (having rearranged the duvet several times and drunk some water), for three reasons: one, there are only two dogs within a mile of here, and they only ever bark in duet, whereas this is definitely a soloist; two, they wouldn’t be allowed; and (what was three, oh yes) it doesn’t sound anything like them. 

By now I’m interested.  It’s three forty.  I toy with other possibilities while the barking recedes, circles the house and returns.  Pigs?  Definitely not.  Birds of some sort?  Local sprites rehearsing for Walpurgis?  Wolves?  Not this far south, surely.

I get up and look out.  Obviously, it stops, and I can’t see anything except weak moonlight.  I go back to bed, and it starts again.  Then fades and stops.  Then starts.  Three.  Eleven.  Nine, was that?  Is it always an odd number?  I paraphrase Michael Frayn’s line for John Cleese: It’s not the sound, I can take the sound.  It’s the silence I can’t stand.

I decide to list the Beatles’ singles chronologically.  What was the B side of ‘Love Me Do’?  Okay, A sides only.  I get to ‘Lady Madonna’.

The sun starts to rise, the barking stops, and I go to sleep, to dream (as usual) of going back to work and losing the car.

(to be continued) 


  1. We have a "who who" bird that sits outside the window at night and early mornings reciting "who who".

    I have trouble reciting the names of the Beatles these days....

  2. If there was just one strange in the night, it was evidently not exchanging glances. Unless it was cross-eyed, of course.

  3. Last night I dreamed that next door had paved over our garden and hung their washing on my line. I didn't hear any strange noises; I was too busy having weird dreams.

  4. Too late for walpurgis. However the National Forest Walking festival covers the right dates. And losing cars might fit with forest walking.

  5. I'm afraid that I have nothing useful to offer as a solution to your nocturnal inquirer. You could, perhaps, try replying, "Me me me" and see what happens. Very nice to have met you chez Z, by the way.

  6. I love you lot that I met on Saturday. You make me feel normal ;)

  7. BW - We're normal by East Anglian standards!