07 Feb / Adult Male not allowed to pick his own friends
My darling goes for a walk almost every weekday lunchtime.
He crosses the quagmire of parking lots and slow moving traffic that decorate Tower Junction, en-route for the beautiful Hagley Park. He skirts around the edges of the park until he’s used up half his allotted time, and then he turns around and heads back from whence he came.
I’ve known for many a year that he has a walking companion. Somehow only ever referred to by a nickname assigned since she likes to watch DVD boxsets. Oh, did you guess it? It’s DVD |real first name suppressed|.
You know how it is when your partner talks at length about a group of people that he knows deeply and well by virtue of working alongside them for eight hours a day five days a week, and you don’t know at all really by virtue of not? Your mind tries to pick out the relevant action details from a morass of names and descriptions that clutter up the storyline.
It doesn’t help that I have trouble with names at the best of times. A few years back we performed a series of short fun activities in our workplace, to help liven the otherwise stifled atmosphere. One of the games was to stand in front of a person, ask them a question, and write down their name and answer.
So what, if it doesn’t sound like fun. It was. Anyway I hadn’t finished. After that, you got to take three steps to your side to end up face-to-face with another staff member and answer a question. See? High octane fun in the workplace.
Anyhoo, before I was so rudely interrupted, I wrote down the answer of a staff member that I’d worked with for six years. Not in the same team, but still worked with for a long time.
Couldn’t remember her name. Went to write it down, knew that I knew it or should know it or had known it, couldn’t find it anywhere. That name filing cabinet is a shocking mess, and I think someone’s spilled some hot chocolate down the back of the PQR file draw. Luckily she understood my blank expression and provided it aloud herself.
So back to my darling and his walking companion. I’ve known it was a woman, I knew they went for a walk together most days, I cared about this only as much as I felt happy that he was having a nice walk while I was sitting in the breakout area sculling Coke.
This morning we went on a nice walk on the Port Hills far above Christchurch. A nice deep dark forest walk at the beginning, then joining up with Victoria Park and going on a nice open-air path around the side of a hill, and then back.
As we were crossing the road to join back up with the forest walk a nice fit blond lady on the other side of the road waved. I waved back in true exerciser code of conduct fashion (return the greeting with which you’re greeted, and if necessary point out through the use of bad language that their dog isn’t on a leash and should be) while my darling waved and said ‘Hi’ in a true I-know-that-person greeting.
‘Who’s that?’ I asked when we’d passed them by.
‘You never told me she was blond.’
I swear. That’s all I said. If my darling somehow turned this into a restriction on who he can and can’t see, and who he can or can’t go on lunchtime walks with, that’s on him.