It was a DARK AND STORMY NIGHT on Odd Street.
Woo woo woo went the wind. Whoosh whoosh whoosh went the rain on the windows.
Up in the tiny back bedroom of house number 5, a very charming and lovely girl* with crazy hair and awesome freckles was trying to get to sleep.
*(That’s me, if you hadn’t guessed.)
Actually, I wasn’t trying very hard to get to sleep, because I LOVE stormy nights, but I could hardly hear any of it because of all the other noises in our house.
To start with, I had my little sister, Tilly, sleeping on the bottom bunk underneath me, going Snore snore snore. As well as that, Dad was sitting downstairs watching the TV—blah-dee blah blah—the washing machine was going rum-shloppa rum-shloppa, and Mom was on the phone to her friend Alice going Yabber yabber yabber oh, really? Yabber yabber I told you so yabber yabber HA HA HA serves him right! Yabber yabber.
I still managed to get to sleep, because the only noise that ever kept me awake was when James used to practice with his soccer ball against his bedroom wall. BUDDUNK BUDDUNK BUDDUNK CRASH! Luckily Mom told him that if he ever did it again, she’d burn his soccer shoes and make him take piano lessons, so that was the end of that, THANK GOODNESS.
So a little wind and rain was never going to keep me awake for long. Off I went to sleepy-peeps, but then what DID wake me up was when it got all quiet. The wind and rain had stopped, Mom and Dad had gone to bed, and Tilly had rolled over and stopped making noises. All of a sudden I was wide awake again, staring at the ceiling. Everything was deadly silent, and that’s when I find it really spooky! You know the feeling: all you can do is lie there listening for tiny sounds, like a skeleton tapping on the window or a snake hissing under the bed. EEEEK!
I was just getting to sleep again when suddenly . . .
It was the bell in the school clock.
It was the bell again.
That’s the trouble with clocks. You can’t help . . .
. . . but count how many times the . . .
. . . bell chimes. And another thing . . .
. . . our old bell doesn’t always chime at the same speed. Just when you think it’s finished, it chimes again . . .
. . . but sometimes it doesn’t. So anyway, I had counted six DONGs, which meant it was probably six o’—
. . . eight o’clock . . .
. . . and this book would get very boring if we wrote all the DONGs out, but altogether I counted twenty-seven of them. If every DONG counted for one hour going past, then by my calculations, the clock had DONGed right around until it was three o’clock the next afternoon. That meant it was time to go home from school and I’d missed the spelling test we were going to have. WAHOO!
Good old clock. No wonder I went straight back to sleep with a smile on my face. (Although I couldn’t see the smile, of course, because I was asleep.) (And it was dark.) (And it was my own face and I didn’t have a mirror, so I couldn’t have seen it anyway.) (This is getting silly—ha ha!) (Sausage pie.) (Just thought I’d put that in for no reason!) (I bet the printers take it out.) (The meanies.)