#LockdownDiary – One of many – Day 48
The idea of a collection of daily words describing how you felt for 30 days of social distancing and isolation feels really meaningful to me and something that I think I’d really appreciate having in 10 years. Think outside the box of what you might typically write!— NaNoWriMo (@NaNoWriMo) March 31, 2020
‘The neighbour needs some eggs,’ I tell my partner out of the blue as we are both sitting on the sofa deep into a long social media scroll.
‘What?’ She raises her head confused.
‘The neighbour needs some eggs. I heard her yesterday speaking in the garden. She can’t get any and she’d like to start giving eggy bread to J.’ J., being her baby. ‘We could give her a box.’
‘Sure.’ My partner drops her head back to her phone.
‘Yes but how do I approach her? I mean, I can’t just ring her door bell and say ‘here, have some eggs. I overheard you yesterday in the garden when you assumed you were having a private conversation’, can I?’
No, I can’t I decide. I have never known how to speak with strangers. My partner and I moved into this house in September but we haven’t had much contact with our neighbour since. Every time I have rang her bell to collect a parcel she has signed for us, she has been too busy to chat, which is fair enough considering she has a small child and two pre-teens boys.
This really bugs me. It should be easy to chat with my neighbour. We have talked more since lockdown. She has loaned her a lawnmower, we have chatted about this and that every time we have seen one another, but how do I hand her a box of eggs she hasn’t asked for?
I know full well what will happen. Either my partner will take the lead or I’ll mumble something incomprehensible, get confused and bright red in the face, and repeat in a much simpler way that I heard she would like eggs and we have some, so here take this box out of my hands before I self combust.
By lunch time I still haven’t mustered the courage to ring her door bell. It’ll be okay,’ I tell myself. It won’t be the first time I’ll feel and look like a fool. My partner walks in from the kitchen with two mugs of tea.
‘Thanks. Do you think I can just leave the eggs at her door?’
‘The eggs, for the neighbour.’
‘Yes,’ my partner enquires.
‘Do you think I can leave them by her door, like at the side a bit so no one steps on them accidentally?’
‘Don’t be ridiculous.’
‘Well… it’ll be easier.’ I defend myself. Before my partner can reply we hear the familiar roar of the lawnmower at the front of the house. I jump to my feet and hurry to the kitchen door. Through the window, I can see the back of our neighbour, mowing the front lawn.
‘She’s outside,’ I whisper to my partner.
‘Then go and give her the eggs.’
‘But I can’t. What would I say?’
My partner groans and comes off the sofa. She walks into the kitchen, grab the eggs, and step out.
‘Hello,’ she greets our neighbour as she turns off the lawnmower.
‘Allysse overheard you yesterday saying you can’t find any eggs. We have loads,’ she adds as she hands the box over.
Our neighbour takes it smiling. ‘Are you sure?’
My partner comes back in while our neighbour goes back to mowing the lawn after leaving the box of eggs by her door. I watch her for a moment longer, happy she has eggs, confused at how easy that conversation was.
Anxious brain be anxious sometimes.