Only on the rare occasion do I use an alarm clock, perhaps for an early train or when a ship is coming into harbour. Otherwise I avoid them like the plague. Why? They are inescapably associated – from former lives – with being woken up before I am ready in order to do something that I don’t want to do for someone I don’t like. Needless to say, an alarm clock always makes me feel tired and cranky, no matter how long I have actually slept.

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