Afterwards Maryn could not explain why she did not put the eggshells directly into the compost bin, why she put them in a bowl and placed it on the window sill. She’d just come in from work, tiredness dragging at her as she struggled in with the shopping. A late meeting, her mind straining against Magill’s words. Missed targets, raising the bar, strategies going forward.
That woman on Nassau street. Her image on the screen of my mind like some subliminal messaging system. I saw her yesterday, not long after I arrived here in the city. I keep coming back to it, why she stood out from all the others, the incongruity of her clothes and makeup.
When she comes in from the shops Dolores has that preoccupied look that is a sure sign that something is wrong. You can feel your body tensing. She sits down at the table with her bag still over her shoulder and she looks up at you with a frown. There’s that heavy feeling in the air that you sense sometimes before a thunderstorm.
I’m not a fan of caves but when my kids wanted to go and see the Ailwee caves I agreed to the trip when they told me how educational it would be. I told them I’d been before and that I’d be happy to look around the Interpretative Centre and read about it over warm tea and a comforting scone while my husband brought them into the bowels of the earth.
The first person who speaks to you in Listowel this year besides the landlady is an old woman who is sitting on an Esb box outside the Listowel Arms, and she calls you over and asks you to go to the shop and buy her some bananas. And you look at her perplexed, mentally assessing her clothes and deciding she doesn’t look poor and wondering if you heard her right and you say ‘Why?’ in a puzzled kind of way and she looks at you as if you were stupid…