We sat together in her small flat.
Another pensioner with time on her hands, Edna was worried about the road drilling outside.
I wasn’t surprised. She had lived with it daily for the past two weeks, a relentless and nerve-jangling reverberation that made even conversation difficult. It would have driven me to despair, and possibly violence.
‘I don’t know how you put up with it,’ I said.
‘Oh, it’s not me I’m worried about,’ she said with a dismissive wave of her hand. ‘It’s the poor man with the drill.’
‘The man with the drill?’
‘Well, fancy doing that for a job! I only have the racket for a few weeks; he has it every day of his life!’
‘I suppose so,’ I say, struggling to access feelings of concern.
Love is putting yourself in someone else’s shoes, even when they have a road drill in their hands.