First, fall out of bed with difficulty, eat up porridge son left when he went to school, bath and dress as fast as you can manage. Look at watch and conclude you have 45 minutes to get to the hospital, which should be enough. Check A-Z one last time to make sure route is in your head, then forget to take it to car.
Drive along route as memorised – first bit fine. Manage unfamiliar left turn at familiar junction, start looking out for major right turn to hospital area, with snail-shaped junction (as portrayed on map). See no snail-shaped junction or right turn, eventually arrive at perfectly normal, non-snail-shaped junction with lights, right turn and sign indicating correct area but wrong road number. Decide to go straight on in case junction you want is further on.
Rapidly realize that you are in a shopping street you shouldn’t be in, and if you don’t turn off soon you will be up over a flyover and on the way to central London in completely the wrong direction. Take a left, discover it takes you back to the road you started your journey on, but heading back home. Start to cry and curse. It is now (apparently) 11.00 am which is your appointment time.
Calm down sufficiently to locate other A-Z in car, manage to find correct page while in queue, annoy other drivers by trying to consult it while edging forwards. Decide to take next left, then find the turning left lane is blocked by roadworks till the last 10 yards. Manage to turn left at last minute, consult map again.
Successfully find next left turn which promises to take you to a road which will take you to another road which will eventually take you to the hospital. Amazingly, it does. Come to end of this road without realizing it is the end, where you should have turned right and right again, instead of which you have got caught in a left lane. It is now well past your appointment time.
Manage to turn round in a side road, head in the right direction and up the road where the hospital is supposed to be. Go a long way up this road, over a roundabout which shouldn’t be there, and end up almost in an army base. Turn round again and head back the other way. It is now 25 minutes after your appointment time. Eventually find turning to hospital, next to the Tube station you failed to spot on the way up. There is no hospital name sign and no ‘H’ signs anywhere.
At some point in this whole farrago, switch from CD (which you have now heard all the way through) and to the radio. Hey – something’s wrong here – why is Woman’s Hour on after 11.00? Realise that the clock in your car has not been turned back, and that you are in fact *half an hour early* for your appointment! Must have looked at watch wrong on way out. D’oh!
At least the psychiatrist is sure you don’t have bipolar. Inability to read clocks disorder, now that’s a different matter…
Decide to take rest of day off, go to Brent Cross shopping centre and get new ‘best’ shoes and a new coat. Both very satisfactory. New brains unfortunately not available in M&S (it’ll come: ‘this is not just any high-quality brain, this is an M&S brain…’)