Monday, August 04, 2008
A while ago I was very much in love with a girl called Elisabeth. We weren't well-suited, then at least. She was serious, I was glib. She had a career, I had a job. We didn't get along with each other's parents. She was a snob, I think, but not a bad one. We were both youngest children with much expected of us. We lived together for a while in a flat in Kensal Rise. She grew out of me or tired of me. Anyway she didn't want me anymore. I don't think of her that often.
She's with a soldier now. And I hope she's perfectly happy. Perhaps she has kids.
She came into my shop today, not her exactly, but a woman who looked like her, laughed like her. Same height and shape. Same age. With a little girl of a year or so who immediately became my best friend. I didn't speak to her mother really, it would have awkward, but as she left I asked her daughter's name. "Freya", she said. She looked straight at me without that distance you expect between strangers. "Say goodbye, Freya." Freya refused to comply. And then, curiously, so did her mother. She loitered, asking supplementary questions, trying to work me out. Eventually she left. Freya still refused to wave.
"She reminded me of someone," I told my colleague, Scott.
"Funny that," he replied. "She said the same thing while you were downstairs."
"What did you say?"
"I said you look like Orson Welles."