It was the first time in my life that I had been alone. Yet I didn't feel lonely. I was enjoying my own space, my own time, discovering myself and all that. I did sense the presence of something slightly threatening. Now I look back, I did sense something, yes. It was during the night. Sometimes I would lift my head, thinking I heard a noise. My neck and body would stiffen as all my senses, especially my ears and eyes strained radar-like in search of potential danger. I lay there like a piece of petrified wood or one of those terrible lava preserved images from Pompeii. I would think up possible methods of attack and escape routes - most of them probably far more devastating in theory than they could possibly be in actuality. I suppose I wasted good sleeping hours in this way for about three months, on and off. I would get up in the morning and find my book was not where I thought I had left it. My scissors disappeared. There was sugar on the floor in the kitchen ... not much just enough to annoy me, crunching and sticking to my feet. Once the coffee jar was lying in the cupboard with its lid off. I don't drink coffee. I keep a jar in the cupboard for when guests come. I can't say I thought too much of all this though. These things have always happened to me in varying degrees. My imagination has been known to have fun with the creaks and groans of old houses and I can be absent-minded at the best of times.



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