She just came back from her last class of the autumn term. She taught Latin in a high school. The job itself was not hard, and the salary was good, but she was still desperate for a break. Especially now, when the whole city was immersed into holiday spirit and decorations. As she waited for the water to get ready in the heater, she remembered that she did not have any coffee left. The teacher went down, to the shop next to her building. There was no snow and it was cold outside. It was early evening, but it was already dark. Razors of winter were pressed against her cheeks, as she struggled to keep herself warm in her coat. The shop was not near enough. A girl with red hair was walking out of the shop in a hurry, and accidentally pushed the teacher who had just showed up at the door. Where was everyone running to these days? The teacher shook her head in disappointment and went in to buy coffee.
When she returned to her apartment, her mind was set on getting under the shower. Surrounded by steam, she washed away the chills and put some old clothes on. The teacher opened the window, but she could barely see anything. The fog hid everything. The buildings were silhouettes, and cars were nothing but approaching and distancing yellow and red lights. The windows of other apartments were blurs. She saw the street and the road below. However, she could not see where it ended. The fog was too thick and anything could jump out if, but she would not properly react to it.
Her hair was still wet on the back of her head when she went to bed. Darkness was spilled in the room. She was trying to fall asleep. Someone was driving a very loud car outside. She was on a holiday, starting with the next morning. Someone dropped something on the floor in the apartment above. She was planning to eat properly and regularly and sleep more. Someone was using the elevator. She would enjoy all the benefits of a decently accomplished life. The holidays were just around the corner with all the celebrations and excitement. But, for some reason, she did not find them delightful. Surely, she would exchange gifts and phone calls of best wishes, laughing and having a great time with her friends and family. Yet, she always felt like there was a shadow cast over it, she could never be fully happy. The holidays were the hardest times.
That was her annoying habit of analyzing and thinking too much when she was the most tired. Another car speeded through the street. She sighed and turned on her side. Then, she turned back on her back. The thoughts were rushing all at once and she could not handle them. She knew that she would fall asleep at one point, but that moment was not coming fast enough. She wondered how many days she would spend like that. Inhaling, getting up, digesting food, exhaling, working at a job that is good only because there is nothing else, having sex, and going back to bed. The sequence was to be repeated multiple times during her lifespan. It was certainly an enriching experience, but it could not go on forever. It had to break, it had to end some day. She wanted to know when and how, but that is not the way it worked.
The teacher heard two people arriving back to their apartment and talking. Although they tried to be as quiet as possible, their voices echoed in the hallway over the sound of the key turning in the lock. She identified them as the two students, roommates, who lived in the apartment closest to the elevator. It was Friday. They were probably coming back from a night out.
She looked through the window. The fog had lifted and she could see the bleaching of the night and it turning into dawn. She spent the whole night awake again. The first day of her holiday, she would begin tired. There would be time to fix it. The next day, or the day after that. Then she fell asleep.