I’ll set the scene: I’m at university, living in halls. College party, space-themed, lots of Jedis and Princess Leias, lots of alcohol, lots of dancing, lots of gossip. At about 2.30am, I hit the hay.
There’s a single bed in my room, but I’ve chosen to sleep on the floor most nights this week because my mattress (no doubt worn out by fifteen years of students sleeping on it) makes my back ache. So I’m on the floor, cocooned warmly in my very own duvet sandwich.
At about 3.30am, someone comes into my room. I’m actually fairly awake, and in the darkness I can just about make out the build of my friend Nick. Tall guy. Square head.
‘Hello’, I say. ‘Is that you Nick?’. No reply, he just throw himself onto my bed. He must be having a weird night’s sleep; he's probably just had enough of his girlfriend's tractor-snoring. Anyway, Nick falls asleep immediately and starts gently wheezing. N’aww. He seems perfectly happy without a duvet, so I just leave him be.
Nestled back into my comfy spot on the floor, I manage to get a few hours’ sleep, but Nick’s snoring and shuffling is keeping me up. In the next hour or so, I find myself hungry, tiptoeing around my room, and trying not to wake him up. Better keep the fridge fairly closed, don’t want the light to wake him. Better not take the lid off this yoghurt too loudly. Better shut the fridge door gently.
After I get back from going to the loo, Nick seems to be shivering, so I throw a duvet over him. It’s at that point, in the dim, 6am light that I realise: Oh bugger. That does not look like Nick's head. Far too round.
“Um, hello?” I manage. “Who is this?”. I feel a bit of an idiot.
The man, Maybe Not Nick, mumbles something totally incoherent. Shit. Definitely Not Nick.
“I thought you were my friend – Nick. But now I’m not sure” I say, stupidly, thinking out loud.
“I’m going to turn the light on”.
I think we were both a bit taken aback. For there, lying on my bed, was a middle-aged Asian man, now Definitely Absolutely Irrefutably NOT Nick, staring me right in the eyes and murmuring something completely incomprehensible.
'Oh my god’ I thought, staring back into the man’s wide eyes. ‘There’s a man in my bed’.
Then, in a surprisingly-collected tone, I heard myself think: ‘Okay. Well he doesn’t seem to want to rape me or kill me. Is he on drugs?’
The man’s mumbling started turning into recognisable words. He was very confused. uH? Uh?? What? Mnnmm. Oh. Shiiittt. I’m sorrrry. I’m sorry. Gghhhghh. Where are my trainers? Ghghhhh.
Through gurgles and mumbles, I managed to get out of the Man in my Bed that he was the dad of the boy who lives on the floor below me. I'm guessing, back from a big night out, drinking with his son.
Though relieved that I wasn't about to be killed, I was still barely dressed, so I sat on the floor with my duvet around me, cone-fashion, trying to explain to the half-sleeping father that his son lives in the room immediately below mine. Just down the stairs. No, I don’t know where your trainers are. Maybe in your son's room. No, it's, uh it's fine, really. Honest mistake to end up in my room, not his. It's fine, seriously. 100% fine. It's fine.
The man shuffled out in a daze, leaving me to try and get my head around the fact that I had just spent half a night trying not to wake up a completely-unknown man sleeping in my bed, who had kept me up with his snoring.