(scroll below for links to other stories in this series)
Their voices came through the window before I saw them. Then I spotted their blue shirts with the white piping – like many of the other staff here wear – but their conversation ...
Though today they were much later than usual.
I looked at my computer screen and blocked their voices out, stopped up my ears with the music I’d heard last night from the church choir.
Once, just once, I wish Brian wasn’t so good at his job and would let them smoke their cigarettes closer to the vestry.
I shuddered as I pulled out the second drawer under my desk and placed my hand on the Bible resting inside. My fingers were light on the worn leather and I didn’t even say a prayer, I just … thought.
And wondered what It’s starting to grow over means.
I didn’t want to listen to their voices but they were there, on the other side of the open window, and I saw his face but I didn’t want to remember that either.
Closing the drawer, I twisted my wrist to look at my watch: two minutes and I could leave. I’ll have a salad roll, I thought. Which is what I have most days. The younger woman at the café makes the salad rolls. The older one forgets to put most of the salad in.
More laughter from outside. I moved the cursor to the bottom of the screen and with two clicks, logged out of my computer.
These men make me think of my son and what he is doing in his life now and I don’t want to think of my son and the path he has chosen away from God.
I wondered if they know him and I pray, I pray they don’t.
Get my hole fucked so hard it’s gaping open but I’ve got a smile on my dial from arsehole to breakfast time.
I moved around my desk and threw the vertical blind aside. Bible verses filled my head but their talk had left the words clogged in my throat. So I just slammed the window shut.
They didn’t even turn to look.
Grabbing my bag and cardigan from the chair, I neatened my Wednesday blouse by pulling it down at the waist, smoothed my crucifix across the bustline, and straightened the collar. This blouse has tiny white cherries appliquéd on the collar points. I’m sure I’m the only one who has ever noticed them.
I pushed the slide next to my name across on the In Out board. I’m always the last to leave for lunch. Everyone else has finished it by the time I go.
Checking my reflection in the glass of the front door, I opened it to exit the building. I must add hair dye to my shopping list, I thought. And stepping out into the sun, wondered what drink would go best with my salad roll.
published 22 February 2013
click below for more stories in this series:
• Earlier (#2)
• Earlier Again (#3)