Novel Notes by Jerome K. Jerome
She answered the question put to her and then stopped dead. I called downstairs to her on one occasion, before I understood her peculiarities, to ask her if she knew the time. She replied, "Yes, sir," and disappeared into the back kitchen. At the end of thirty seconds or so, I called down again. "I asked you, Amenda," I said reproachfully, "to tell me the time about ten minutes ago."
"Oh, did you?" she called back pleasantly. "I beg your pardon. I thought you asked me if I knew it--it's half-past four."
Ethelbertha inquired--to return to our fire--if she had tried lighting it again.