>The hubby and I live on the 10th floor of a building. But we don’t know anyone there. Can’t be helped, really. We rush out at 8.00 am and wearily trudge in at 10.00 pm everyday. Weekends are spent in quick runs to supermarkets, sleep, meeting up with friends and some more sleep.
So the only opportunity one gets to socialize is in the elevators! And women …well….talk. So I know everyone by face, name and other small sundry details like who has how many children, who’s children are in what school, etc etc. So I, at least get treated like a neighbor, unknown and mysterious, but tolerable neighbor nevertheless.
Hubby, on the other hand, has had some disastrous encounters. His friendly overtures in the lift are a treat to watch. One day, we had just stepped into the lift when the next door neighbor’s daughter came sashaying in. She’s 17. She smiled at us. We smiled back. How’s college, I asked. Cool, she replied. Hubby, deciding that he had to add his two bits to this cerebral conversation said, “hmmm, I hope you’re studying hard. Exams around the corner, right”? End of all polite conversation. We were suddenly in Siberia. Or one would feel from the cold looks we got from her.
“What did I say”? he said later, completely nonplussed.
“She’s 17, honey”, I replied.” You don’t talk to 17 year old girls like they’re errant kids.”
“But she is a kid!”
Sigh! “I know, but you never ever imply that.”
“Really, very rude kids.”
So now whenever we are in the lift with a youngster, I’ll do the small talk, while he’ll maintain stony silence.
And then today he kinda took the cake. While walking back from the car towards the building, I caught him smile and nod at this elderly woman rushing by.
“ Sweet Aunty”, he said. “I keep running into her in the lift”.
“I know”, I nodded sweetly, “She’s the neighbour’s cook!”
I think the poor man is done with trying to get to know the neighbours!