Thursday December 16, 2004
“I’m sure I did it last week,” I said in reply to Graham’s assurance that it was my turn to take the trash out to the front gate.
“Your memory is going funny again.”
“Hmmm. Sometimes I think you take advantage of that.”
“Don’t be silly. Anyway, you wouldn’t remember if I did.”
So I pulled on my waterproof, tucked the hood over my head, pulled the strings tight, did the “I’m just going outside and I may be some while” thing to no visible effect at all, sighed, and stepped out into the face of a particularly unpleasant squall of rain.
“Are you sure it’s my turn?” I yelled back into the kitchen.
“Yes. Shut the door, quick, the rain’s coming in.”
Resigned to a complete lack of sympathy I sighed again, pulled my hood well down, and started schlepping bags of trash from the bins at the back of the house to the grass verge outside the gate.
Soon enough I was warming to the task, and enjoying it in a perverse kind of fashion.
“Mornin’, John!” came a yell from G’s kitchen door, slightly ajar to let the air in and keep the rain out.
“Mornin’, G.! Lovely day!”
“Doesn’t take much to please you Southerners, does it?”
“Nope. It’s being so cheerful as keeps us going!”
And then an Amtrak van pulled up outside, taking advantage of the single human brave enough to be out in such lousy weather.
“Do you know a Mrs X.?” the driver asked, pulling his door open just a crack to save the stack of parcels on his passenger seat from a drenching.
“Nope. ‘fraid not. You got a house name?”
He had, of course, and that was what I needed to direct him.
“Thanks, mate. You’ve got a grand day for that job.”
“You’re welcome. Yeah. Always rains on trash day.”
And off he drove, leaving me tugging at the front of my hood against an extra-strong buffet of wind. The last of the five sacks was soon done and I allowed the wind to blow me back in the direction of the kitchen.
“Shut the door, quick, the rain’s coming in,” said Graham.
“You know what?” I asked, shaking my waterproof vigorously in the shower cubicle.
“It’s a blusterous day out there.”
“That’s true. At least it’s blown the fog away.”
“Oh, it’ll be back. Fog always comes back.”
“What’s that you’re writing down?”
“A note to myself that I did the trash today. You’re not going to catch me out again next week.”
“You’ll have forgotten you wrote it down by the time trash day comes round again.”