I open my eyes and squint, caught in the shard of violent sunlight sneaking in through the curtain. I wonder, as I often do, what actually woke me up. Like, at what point did my subconscious jerk awake, and why?
I heard my neighbour open a door, heard footsteps and waited for more information so I’d know if it was the husband or the wife. This house is eerily quiet, so quiet I once heard the husband pee, every uneven second of it, up until the shaky fart just before the flush.
I hear the crude sound of a broom dragging along the concrete floor of the compound and I know it’s the wife this time. She’s out for her morning sweep. I wonder why she bothers. The weather is dry and not at all windy. Added to that, we’ve no trees shedding leaves in or around the compound, what the hell does she feel she needs to sweep every damn morning?
It’s like she needs to pretend to her husband and all concerned that she’s a good, hard-working, well brought up woman, or some such shit.
My main issue with her sweeping is the fact that she sweeps the same area every day. Yet, when I come out on the way to work, there’s this same strip of green plastic sitting on the floor; what does she sweep up every fucking day?!
I listen to her absently, as she performs her punishment straight out of Hades; doing the same thing and making no difference and wonder…
I wonder if she has trouble conceiving. I feel she’s doing something wrong as far as sex with her husband is concerned. I think to myself how maybe he’s sexually frustrated, and she’s plain frustrated because she keeps shagging the guy but fails to get pregnant.
And how would she get pregnant with these sweeping patterns, I ask you.
I stretch luxuriously when the sweeping sounds stop, and mentally prepare myself to get ready for the day. When I rush out of my door right in the nick of time, as usual, I sidestep the green plastic in its usual place and sigh deeply.
Who am I to judge this poor woman, I think, hastening my step so I don’t get to work late. After all, aren’t we all like her, going through the motions, with that one aspect of our lives we’re not willing to change?