Writing Interruption: You Can’t Make This Stuff Up

As promised, I did a bit of writing last week. During the shopping, wrapping, and packaging of Christmas gifts for shipping to my family, I wrote a couple hundred words. I should probably be horrified that, with two solid days off work, I couldn’t string together more than a few paragraphs. But I was actually quite pleased with those couple of paragraphs and was excited to get back to them.

Then the strangest thing happened…

First, a little background information. To pay the bills until I hit the best seller list, I’m a property manager for a self-storage facility. I live in an apartment on-site. Going home for lunch is literally walking around the corner from the office.

It’s a nice set up. I have a screened in porch, two bedrooms, and vaulted ceilings. It costs me a dollar an hour from my salary, but that’s a pretty sweet deal by any standard.

Getting back to the strangest thing…

I’m sitting at my computer during lunch getting ready to pick up my story where I left off. I hear the screen door slam and glance at the door in time to watch one of my tenants, an older gentleman, open the apartment door and walk in!

I jump up, “Excuse me, this isn’t the office. This is my home.”

“Can I use the bathroom?”

My jaw drops. First, he doesn’t apologize for letting himself into my private space. How would he feel if some stranger just waltzed into his home without knocking or being invited? And then he wants to use my bathroom? I’m immediately annoyed about the invasion of my already-too-short lunch hour because this guy couldn’t go across the street to the Taco Bell.

During the short silence while I’m inwardly cussing, he says nothing but he doesn’t leave. The look on his face suggests if he waits too much longer, I might have a mess on my dining room floor.

I stand up, mentally scolding myself for not locking the door, “You can use the office bathroom.”

I escort him from my apartment and around the building to the office. I figure it will take a couple of minutes and I’ll be back to describing the garden oasis shoe-horned into a tiny downtown Charleston residential lot.

Fifteen minutes later, I’m still standing in the office waiting on this man. I can hear flushing two, then three times. I hear him mumbling. I hear the faucet turned on and off twice. I know this isn’t going well.

I’ll spare you the details, but it was not the brightest day in self-storage.

By the time I got back in the apartment, I had 5 minutes left of my lunch break and one of the cats had commandeered my desk chair for her afternoon nap. And now I had a bathroom to clean.



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