My time is measured out in units of six minutes. Each unit is worth £40. For lawyers, time really is money. I have to account for at least six billable hours of my working day. I am always looking at my watch.

It has spilled over into my personal time. In the evenings, I calculate how many hours I have when I get home from work before I have to have my shower and go to bed. And then the race against time begins to fit in all the things I have to do and all the things I want to do.

Annie sees me checking the clock and it unsettles her. It is as if I am timing our conversation, timing the length of the dinner we are having. Does she have to speak faster to fit everything in before I click the stopwatch and move on to the next task? Will I be timing our intimate moments together?

The pull of time hooks into my chest and reels me along, yanks when I linger too long on one thing. Time is money and lawyers count out the money they are making. For me, I feel as if I am counting away my life.

Advertisements