I did, just.
"Michael, you've been a little funny for some time."
I now recalled why I was ice skating. I was ice skating because Tallulah's mother had conceived that the three of us should do something meaningful together. Just one thing, to remind Tallulah that she was still special. We cast about for one meaningful thing and landed upon ice skating. Tabitha knew how to ice skate, Tallulah and I did not. Tallulah and I would learn together, side by side. In that briefly harmonious spirit we had set off, presumably not long before, for the local ice rink. What I couldn't remember is why we needed to remind Tallulah she was special.
"Where are my wife and daughter?" I asked.
"They're outside in your car," he said. "Do you remember what kind of car you have?"
I did, a bit more clearly. "How long have I been unconscious?" I asked. He didn't answer.
"What year is it?" he asked. A wave of irritation crashed over me. My head pounded. I didn't care what year it was, or what car I owned, or what I had eaten for dinner. I had bigger problems. Such as: Who was I? Or rather: Was I the same me as I had been before whatever had happened to me happened to me? I needed for the man to sit down and listen to my life story, from the beginning, to see if it all felt familiar. Then I remembered something else: the book! Before I fell on my head, I was writing a book.
"Can you remember what year it is?" asked the emergency rescue worker.
I told him what year it was. This time the answer came to me easily.
"Do you remember falling?"