Anna had been in the job for two months and had struggled right from the first day. She tried so hard to fit in…but she knew she was different, she always had been. Once, in the morning tea break, she’d tried to talk about the things that excited her, but their eyes glazed over after 30 seconds then Brian mentioned Coronation Street and she became invisible.
Anna remembered how, when she was little, she would spend time with her invisible friend, Max…they had so many adventures together, but her parents never understood. One day, she woke up and Max had gone. She cried for a week, but he never returned.
There was a tiny part of her that longed to be like them it would be so much easier; less complicated.
She’d tried to discuss things with Sally from accounts once, because she had mentioned that she liked to travel…grasping at straws really. Sally had looked at her like she was a rabid dog and said, ‘Anna, I like to travel to different places for the shops, what you’re talking about, well, it’s just not for people like us, is it?’ It was a rhetorical question, one that Anna found offensive, and she realised her and Susan were oceans apart.
Talking of oceans, she had noticed that morning, how the sheets on the washing line reminded her of sail boats, and she floated to work on a wave of salty air and the sound of sea lapping the shore.
‘5 pm’, Carol chirped, ‘time for home, folks!’ She said the same thing every day, like a bloody automated announcement, was she in fact a robot? Anna had no idea why Carol always sounded so glad to be going home, because on her second day in the job, she had quite out of the blue told Anna how much she hated her husband and wished she could leave him.
That night Anna dreamed of robots and leaving to visit faraway places by the sea. Max was there, she was overjoyed, especially when he asked her to go on an adventure with him, like old times.
At work the next day, Anna’s boss let everyone know about the email he’d received.
Hello Dave, I am afraid I won’t be able to come into work today. In fact I won’t be coming in ever again. I am off on an adventure. Kindest regards, Anna.
‘I always thought Anna was a bit odd,’ said Carol. ‘Did you see Coronation Street last night Brian?
Writing, learning and connecting with March prompt-a-day over at write alm; today’s is ‘5 pm’.