(Continued from Mr. Chips: Part I)
We’ve had probably two conversations over the course of the three-year period I’ve been living in my flat, excluding the sporadic texts he sends asking if he can use our parking space.
The first was walking between the electric gate and his front door, when he attempted to persuade me to attend the upcoming street party. The sociopath-recluse in me wanted nothing to do with it, but after three different neighbours took it upon themselves to ‘check’ I was going, I didn’t feel like I had a choice. The second conversation took place at the party itself. I can’t remember the details but I do remember him saying something a bit catty about the neighbours who hadn’t put in an appearance. I defended them on the grounds they might have other plans, or be tired – either way, weekends are precious, and it wasn’t for us to judge them. That speech, uncharacteristic on my part, must have gone down a treat.
I also remember being a bit dazzled by him. He could talk to anyone, which I find incredibly attractive, and seemed genuinely interested in what they had to say, which is rare. And because I was dazzled I put him in the category of ‘couldn’t possibly be interested’.
I smile. ‘Hey!’
I think I know his name, but I’m not 100% sure.
He asks where I’ve been, offers me a chip.
‘Is it organic?’ I say with a grin.
‘Organic, Fairtrade, you name it….’
We joke all the way to his door, and over the threshold.