Foca ignored me again. "I'll send you an email" he said to the wind as he walked off with our son.
"Your email to the school said Sunday from now on," I called after him.
On he walks, up the steps, disappears.
As she witnesses the exchange Lovely Woman does the Sign of the Cross on her head, heart and shoulders, and says:
"You could see that, you could see that attitude. That wasn't nice darlin', not nice at all."
"Do you think so?" I say. "I'm so glad you've said that, so glad. Thank you."
She walks off to where she's going, I go back inside the block and call The Toilet.
Fuming, I was about to rage on here. There's a bottle of beer in the fridge, drink the nectar. Then I thought no, write that post about the exchange you've just had with the council.
Lovely Woman is called Lovely Woman because she is. It might be the only time I mention her, who knows.
I think she's an ex heroin addict. I say I think because you can tell she was once beautiful but her cheeks have sunk in where her teeth used to be, her eyes are tired, her skin lined from all her history. OK, she told me once. She drinks but then don't we all.
She doesn't live here but she's here a lot because her friend, a fellow addict, lives here, also a lovely man. I can't tell you how old they are. At first I thought maybe 50 or 60 but I now I think late 30's, early 40's. Fuck, maybe she's even younger. I've never asked. She's never asked me how old I am either. We're both 200 I'd say.
Years ago I'd see her sometimes and smile, then one day "hello" turned into "how are you?".
She once told me I was really clever doing a masters. I said there were loads of courses at City Lit she could do, or the Working Men's College. She told me she couldn't read. I told her I did a 'back to work for lone parents' pilot a few years ago. I was sitting next to a young grandmother who couldn't read or write. She had a boyfriend who said that if she did the course, he would leave her.
"Not only was she there at the course," I told her, "but at the end she signed up for another one to learn to read and write. If she can do it, so you can too."
"Oh no darlin', I couldn't do that. "
"You can. It takes courage but you're brave."
"Nah! I'm not!" she laughed.
"You are! In your own time though, believe it in your own time!"
We chat now every time we meet but I never blog about her because I never talk about the people who live here. Very rarely anyway.
What she did for me this afternoon though was very special. Her being there was very lucky for me.
I think I'll have that beer now.
Doopee doop, you'll get the omnibus on Sunday.