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In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Call Me Ishmael.

‘I have just returned from a visit to my landlord – the solitary neighbour that I shall be troubled with.’ Wuthering Heights.’

The baby was laughing all the while , and trying so hard to say mama and  my heart was lifted with the  simple pleasure of her voice  and her  loud  sounds of m m  as the  sun  sparkled between the trees such  a lovely day. to  go for a long walk in the park  this afternoon with her and hear her  baby talk as  I pushed  her in her little  buggy and pointed out all the melia of events that I was sure we would discover.

The land lord was very sullen and didnt even notice the baby or  invite us in but rather  kept us on the doorstep as I asked in the  gentlest way possible if he could organise for the  chimney to be  repaired  as soon as possible. This was  a simple job that he had stated in many phone calls previously would be fixed before we decorated.

That was 2 months ago now and each day was getting closer to baby’s first birthday and the house was in desparate need of a new coat of paint but  the chimney was  causing  a bad smell in the house and we did not want to decorate until that job was out of the way . 

I cant put my finger on it but this morning the landlord looked almost aggressive as  we  stood in the door way and  his eyes  looked  haunted   and  this saddened me for a moment  making me feel almost guilty for being so happy with the day’s  unfolding and my plans for the walk. 

After explaining  my plight  all he said was  ,  the work will be carried out on  Friday , he gave no excuse  and  without one word of acknowledgement he closed the door almost in my face.

I could feel the heat rise in my cheeks as if I had been slapped sharply , baby was unaware of anything other than  the  sound of her voice and as I bent to  release the brake on the buggy I buried my face  in her  soft embrace and heard those lovely words mama mama  , I held her soft little hand to my cheek feeling the soothing effect  on my skin as we both  looked up at once to the  landlord once again in the door way . 

His look had not altered if anything he seemed quite annoyed that we were still there . but this time I did not speak so gently to him , I addressed  with his complete title and  announced that my solicitor would be in touch with him within 24 hours and that I would be making a claim for   the health hazard that the chimney  had  created in our home for the last  2 months and also the cost of the  telephone calls to his mobile every day trying to find out  when the  work would be done . I spoke clearly and concisely and never   wavered once under his mean aggressive staring eyes , but  unlike my usual  lowering of  my eyes under such circumstances I stared right into those eyes and  was amazed not only by his reaction but also by my faerie child’s reaction     as she stared up to at the man   with tears flowing  down his cheeks as he wept uncontrollably  for at least a minute before hastily retreating back into the house.  ….

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