In the laneway behind my work, I see the guy who works in the café next door. He’s throwing out milk crates and I’m pushing an empty trolley.
We have the usual conversation:
How are you?
I just need this day to be over.
I just need this year to be over.
Yes. I’m so done with this year.
I think ten months would really be enough.
Yeah, ten would be good.
We stand silently in the laneway, he with his milk crates, I with my empty trolley.
Then we walk together into the corridor that connects our two workplaces. He needs to get more milk from the storeroom and I pause for a second with my trolley so it won’t block him opening the door.
Oh, I say as it opens.
Fuck, he says.
A two litre bottle of milk has fallen from a crate and split open, running an intricate white maze through the crisscross metal floor.
We stare at the milk, then at each other.
He says, But my shift finishes in five minutes.
I know I shouldn’t, but I say, So… maybe leave it?
He looks back to the milk, then to me. Then slowly, he closes the door.
He says, I was never here.
And he walks away.
A version of this post was sent by email on the 1st December 2018 as part of Internet Care Package – a weekly memoir project in the form of a newsletter. It also includes links to the best things I’ve found on the internet each week and occasional updates on my theatremaking. This blog is a select archive of those emails. Subscribe to get them right in your inbox.