RSS Feed (xml)

Powered By

Skin Design:
Free Blogger Skins

Powered by Blogger

Monday, July 14, 2008

My neighbour is a breath of fresh air


She joined me in this neighbourhood about a month ago – and like they say when you have met Jesus Christ – life has never been the same again.

On Sunday evening, just two days after she became my next door neighbour, I heard a soft knock on my door. “Come on in,” I cried without taking my eyes away from the book I was reading, disgusted at being distracted.
My visitor didn’t even wait for me to finish the chapter I was reading.

“You have so many books here,” she said warmly, taking in my box-sized living room. She wore a flattering white dress with red polka dots. I smiled inspite of myself, but regretted it when a quizzical expression twisted her pretty face.

“You cut a comical figure,” I explained myself, “been long since I saw a girl dressed like that.”
A quick lightening of something like fury flashed in her eyes and I hurried to elaborate; “I don’t mean that in a bad way, you look quite dashing in that little dress and I was thinking I wish all girls dressed like that.”

Then I quickly changed the subject by asking, “How can I help you, Miss?”
“Nancy,” she said, extending her hand in greeting. It was very soft. And Nancy was on “an orientation mission…getting to know my neighbour” and “practicing good neighbourly etiquette.”

I never knew of a thing like that and I didn’t like her guts. I mean I was not going to entertain someone who would often disrupt those special solitary moments, like when I shut myself in my room to recite poetry, listen to lounge worship or read a book.

I remembered how I had been on the verge of abandoning this hood because my previous neighbour – a pretty single woman who left for ‘work’ at 8p.m and returned at 6a.m, had two-loudmouthed twin boys that just never left me alone. I had been relieved when I returned from work one slow evening and found her suddenly gone, although days later, I was terribly missing her ‘naughty boys’ as I called them.

And here was this stunning one, with beauty larger than First daughter Pastor Patience Rwabwogo’s, so full of herself; would I tolerate her?
It turns out that Nancy was a real godsend. She’s a born-again Christian just as I am and sings in a church choir. My, my, you should hear her sing Crystal Lewis’ Beauty For Ashes!

I’ll never forget the day she asked me what I do. “Budding writer,” was my reply, at which point she told me she was impressed. And the next day, she read me a two-page story she had written. It was a boring jumble but I asked her to read it over and over so that I could hear her voice again and again!

She must have thought I liked it because she wore a killer smile all day. She also offered to massage my bony shoulders and clean my room. Nancy sometimes brings me steaming coffee and stays longer reading.
She’s a great cook too, and at her insistence, I no longer have my meals in restaurants. I buy food and she cooks and we eat together like a lovely couple. It’s very funny and I’m loving it.

The other day, she joked that I’ve taught her to consume books like a fire does a dry bush. And she’s quite a talent when she gets to tell about the book she has completed reading.

Today, Chapter 9 is my favourite of Nicky Cruz’s A Final Warning because it’s the chapter she found me reading the first day she knocked on my door. It’s titled ‘The incredible joy of being there.’
And I know what you are thinking. No, I’m not in love with Nancy!

--Sunday Monitor, June 22, 2008