Who can remember baby dolls? The guys might not since they didn’t wear them but any female around my age would. They were scant looking sleepwear, not much to them. Mine were made of nylon and were little more than a panty and frilly tunic. I must have been 12 or 13 when I first went for a walk in my sleep.
My father was doing some kind of pipe work between grandmother’s house and ours. There was a trench dug up between the two houses. I don’t know why I decided to go for a walk that night but I jumped over the trench and landed at Nan Whiffin’s door, banging and shouting “Come quickly, Nan! The house is on fire! The house is on fire!”
Of course, my grandmother rushed to the door and looked over at our house and told me that our house was fine. She said “The house is not on fire! Let’s get you back home.” Then she rigged me out in some of my Uncle Joe’s clothes and walked me back to my house, waking my mother who put me back in bed.
I didn’t remember a thing the next morning. I was told that I had been sleepwalking and that I frightened my grandmother when I told her our house was on fire.
Many years later when I had to go to workshops in British Columbia or in Nunavut, I made sure I had more on than baby dolls as I was afraid I would go sleepwalking in strange hotels. I could imagine waking up and not knowing where I was!
I had a friend who actually got up in the middle of the night and put her hands on a stove. And I’ve heard stories of people who have done strange things while they were sleepwalking. I do recall one night when I got out of my bed to see if my sister Rose was alive as I had dreamed that she was dead.
I never sleepwalked again, not that I know of anyway. Even today if I’m in a new hotel or on a resort, I am wondering if it could happen again. It must have been a strange sight, had anyone been looking, when a young girl walked from one house to another, clad slightly, in the dead of night!