“We’re on the same boat.”

Larry walked with a heavy heart. It was long ago that he and Sarah had a major quarrel and that was about her quitting work. He won that time. This time though, she would win. No doubt about it.

Another pair of hurried footsteps came from behind. He imagined everyone was in a hurry to go to work like him.

“Wait a second,” Jimmy shouted, rushing to get in step with his neighbor. “Care for some company?”

“Be my guest,” Larry replied, grinning sheepishly, masking his inner sadness.

“I am sorry for the early noise barrage. I could not stop Gemma. I was tempted to turn the house safety box off.”

Larry laughed. His wife would love to hear what Jimmy had just confided.

“I think it’s me who need to apologize. I could not stop my wife from buying all those stuff.”

“Neither could I,” Jimmy agreed without reservation.

They decided to walk further on: they skipped the first bus terminal.

“Any ideas on how we could make them friendly with one another?” Larry asked, striking out from his mind his first option of a party.

“How about a game of pretending?” Jimmy suggested. “If they do not know about it, we could get them together without them knowing it.”


“Listen,” Jimmy began his proposition with a short word, “Acting.”

– o –

Sarah got out of the house, angry at her husband who did not kiss her goodbye. In her mind, he should have tried harder before leaving the house.

“That’s a lovely flower you got there!”

The sudden intrusion in her privacy startled her. The feminine voice was not only familiar, it was her envy especially when it was used for singing.

“It’s a gift from my husband,” Sarah replied, somewhat uneasy to be friendly. “Do you like it?”

“Yes,” Gemma smiled, no guile but a genuine display of appreciation. “You have a great garden.”

Sarah’s guard fell down immediately. When her gardening skills were admired, anyone saying so could be her friend.

“If you need some help, I would be glad to give assistance.”

“Really?” Gemma gushed out loud, the twinkle in her eyes was encouraging.

Then, a silent pause came between them. It seemed the air would be getting fresher.

“I apologize for being so childish,” Sarah admitted. “I really do not mean to hurt your feelings.”

“It is I who should ask for your understanding. I am sorry for keeping you on the edge. It’s wrong.”

“I had a spat with my husband this morning when he asked me to patch things up with you. I was mistaken not to have listened to him much earlier.”

“You are not alone,” Gemma confided. “I gave my husband too much financial headaches which should not have happened if I listened to him. He did not want me to compete with you.”

They were overpowered by their deep emotions that the eventually tight embrace followed. It was a beginning of a true and lasting friendship.

“We should have a party,” Sarah suggested. “The four of us. Out of here.”

“There’s a quiet garden I know. That would give us more time to bond.”

Over enthusiasm overwhelmed them both that their morning was spent talking about women stuff. They even discovered that they were too much alike.

(to be concluded)



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