I am a typical “owl”. I find it incredibly difficult to fall asleep before midnight and even harder to wake up.

I usually wake up slowly, between eight and nine. I just lie there for five or six minutes. Then I stumble out to the kitchen to turn on the coffee maker. 99% of me is still asleep. Back to bed again. Three minutes later, a plaintive signal from the kitchen tells me the coffee is ready.

I take three or four sips right in the kitchen, and consciousness begins to activate. Back to bed, another sip or two. Open mail, news, messages. More coffee while trying to recall what day of the week it is, what my obligations are, and so on.

Half a cup of coffee means that 25% of me is awake. Finishing the cup brings me to 50%.

While I’m in the shower, strong black tea is brewed. A huge mug. Milk, honey. Drink, get dressed, down to the garage.

Do you think I am finally cheerful and vigorous? Oh, no! 20% to 30% of me is still asleep. I open the roof of my Beetle (for oxygen), pull into traffic. Only fifteen minutes later am I completely attuned and alive. Sometimes I refuel on coffee on the way.

This is my morning routine, each and every day. But today something went totally wrong.

I recently bought a multi-vitamin, which I always do the spring and fall. I also bought some organic sleeping pills. Both are in the shape of yummy bears. The sleeping pellets didn’t work properly after the first try. Their exposure time was supposed to start after 45 minutes, but for me that moment never came. So I put them aside in the kitchen, possibly to try again down the road. The multi-vitamins were placed on my bedside table.

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