It’s been a while since I did some proper writing – and even longer since I posted anything on this blog of mine. So, here is something I wrote back in August while on holiday in Northumberland.
A man sits alone on a bench. People pass by, paying him no attention. They don’t know his name, or his story. Maybe a child will stop and stare for a moment. The man lifts his head and their eyes meet. He feels awkward, the child curious, but neither can break the spell and they continue to stare at each other. Then the parent is there, grabbing a hand, and the child is gone. He feels relieved and can return to his preferred life of anonymity.
And yet he spends a few hours every day on this bench, in this park. Come rain or shine. Then he ambles back to his nondescript little house on a street like any other. He barely speaks to anyone – his neighbours don’t actually know what his voice sounds like. His clothes are always smartly pressed, his hair combed neatly in a side-parting. The pencil-thin moustache is perfectly trimmed and his sideburns are immaculate. His shoes shine as if just taken out of the box and worn for the first time. He could be somebody’s Grandfather.
However, even though he looks like your ‘average Joe’ old gentleman, there is something about him that hints at a deeper story. Why is he so awkward around others? What makes him want to be anonymous? Who is he, and what has brought him to this juncture in life?
And that’s it. If you have any ideas, or thoughts, let me know!