She woke up to an empty office.

All the cubicle lights were turned off except for hers. The computer monitor flickered brightly right in front of her.

Even the coffee in her mug were still hot. So she guessed she didn’t sleep for too long, perhaps a good fifteen minutes or so.

Where was I? , she thought to herself. The answer was displayed on monitor: the business proposal to be sent to client at nine this morning.

Working over-hour is shitty, even more shitty is the pay, but this proposal need to be sent by nine. At least it was for nine, yesterday another client asked at seven.

She rubbed her eyes, adjusted her shirt and tied her hair back. After she gathered herself, she began tapping the letters on the keyboard, almost rhythmically.

It was three in the morning. Three hours ago she was twenty-six, and for three hours she has been twenty-seven.

She received two texts, one email, two Facebook posts, and a tweet wished her happy birthday.

It was less and less wishes every year.

She remembered the whole class congratulated her when she turned eleven and her whole big family gathered around the day she turned seventeen.

I bet more wishes would come, perhaps everyone just as busy as I am, she thought to herself.

It seemed like only yesterday she had to stayed up late in the office, for an almost identical task to this one.

Yesterday? Or was it the day before yesterday? She asked herself.

Only then she realised she has lost track of days.

For years now, she didn’t think about days anymore. It was always, ‘send it to me by eight tomorrow’, ‘we meet again at three this afternoon’, or ‘I believe we have talked about it at eleven yesterday.

She measured her days by hours and minutes. She thought it was more detailed, more organised.

  • She knew perfectly that it took three minutes for a barista at coffeeshop downstairs to serve you a cup of Americano.

  • The bus to her apartment takes twenty minutes trip.

  • The cafeteria queue at lunch time could be five minutes long, except if you come down ten minutes earlier before anyone else.

  • Her boss always come at eight and leave at three.

  • Her sister outside the town always call at nine at night for a fifteen minutes chat.

Suddenly she stopped typing. And turn her eyes away from the monitor. She looked around the empty office. And she left out a deep sigh before thinking, what day is today, anyway?

She reached for her tablet beside the monitor. She tapped open the calendar app and a giant text was written in bold Avenir.

November. Sixteen. Twenty twenty-two. Three eleven

The app didn’t display anything else. November would be the month. Sixteen would be the date of today — she remembered it since it was her birthday date. The next text would be the year and the next string would be the clock.

It was weird, no days displayed. She grabbed her mouse, opened two tabs in her web browser: email and online calendar. Emails usually display the name of days, the same with online calendar.

The last email she received displayed a date stamp, in thin Myriad Pro.

15 Nov ’22
Sent from my iPad

No days label. She turned to the online calendar and it displayed the following text. Montserrat, bold.

Today is: 16 November 2022

She got up from her chair and go to the next cubicle, searching for printed calendar. No luck. She roamed further. Looking for printed calendar, and the name of today.

None of her officemate seems to keep printed calendar. Not their fault though, ever since the global wide Renewable Energy and Resources pact in 2018, print is a luxury, just as fossil fuel and coals. Everything’s run on either solar, wind or nuclear these days.

She looked even to the thumbprint machine on the front door. Again, it’s written

11/16/2022 03:13

It’s beyond weird. She walked some more, now to the entrance of the meeting room.

Eventually she found a print calendar — made entirely from recycled pulp — in the hall to the meeting room, but it was unusual. The calendar didn’t display the name of days: it was simply just the month’s name and then the dates.

She could’ve guessed it though, usually the rows in calendar would be

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat

or is it

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun ?

Which one?

Usual calendar would mark weekends in different color than weekdays, but this one is printed in one color only. The entire row and column displayed in black.

What day is today?

She reached for her phone on her jeans left pocket and text her friend a message.
‘Li, still up?’
‘Uhhh, yes. Hey did you receive my text? Happy birthday lovely girl!
‘Thanks, Li. One question though. What day is today?’
’Haha, trick question. You want me to congratulate you again? Today is Nov 16 and guess what? It’s your birthday, princess!
‘No, no, I mean what is the name of the day?’
‘No! Is it, like, Monday or Tuesday or what?’

Li didn’t answer back. She’s probably asleep.

Her best bet now would be waiting for her officemates to come, and then asked them. Yeah, that would be her best bet. It was only four hours away, anyway.

She thought about going back to her desk, but before that, she made a quick rendezvous to the pantry and brew a cup of hot coffee for herself.

During her leave, apparently her monitor screen turned to sleep. She placed her coffee mug on the farthest corner of the desk and touched the mouse to wake the monitor.

The monitor opened up to her latest edited document. It was three more pages to be done. She seated herself and ready to type, but she felt a bit exhausted from touring the office.

Three pages would be like thirty minutes work. Forty-five with proofread and editing. She still has plenty of time for a bit of another sleep. After all, it was her birthday and she felt like rewarding herself.

So she folded up her hands on the desk and rest her head there.

She thought that it was all strange. Really, really strange. Why can’t she remember the name of days?

None of it matter anyway, I could just ask anyone later, she thought before going to sleep.

She woke up to an empty office.

All the cubicle lights were turned off except for hers. The computer monitor flickered brightly right in front of her.

Even the coffee in her mug were still hot. So she guessed she didn’t sleep for too long, perhaps a good fifteen minutes or so.