There is glass everywhere. The doors, walls and even some squares of the checkered pattern floor are made of glass. Someone has hung posters of different shows with a few floral prints in-between, to distinguish the walls from doors.
The bustling women dress with enough class they seem to be from another time, a more refined era. The men flitted about dressed in sharply tailored suits, belt only no suspenders here. I am too caught up in the wonder of it all I trip over my own feet and almost John down with me.
John informed an angry gnome-looking colleague about what he was doing and who I am while I worked through the shiny breakable surroundings. I am beginning to feel like a bull in a window shop, the tables were also made of frosted glass.
I felt him tug on my shirt sleeve, “Do you need some water or something while we’re here?”
I shook my head no and pecked a short message to him, “I’m good. If you don’t mind, I’ll wait outside if you don’t need me.” I smiled weakly, nodding to a hard gray office chair. I’d be out of the way and still nearby if he wanted help. Two nodded and went to meet six people sitting at a sharp oval table.
Carefully sitting down, I pulled my mangy copy of “Love & Drugs” out of my MARINES messenger bag and began reading. I may be on an adventure but I’m always prepared for downtime. It becomes a habit when you spend as much time in a hospital waiting to hear if your mom is going to be ok from her latest “accident” as I do…did.
Mom had fifty-two trips to the hospital by my twenty-first birthday, and a couple of months ago she had a final incident with my dad’s baseball bat. Needless to say, childhood wasn’t that great. Thankfully I was the only casualty of that toxic life. I am trying to start a new life with a new college in a new country.
Shouts snapped me out of memory lane, John looked angry. The others had a range of anger, bored and frustration. I put my book away and grabbed my phone then walked into the room. “Excuse me, is everything ok n here?”
The grumpy gnome started barking, “You’re his handler, tell him this isn’t working. Either take out the hearing device or sit quietly in a corner.”
John looked at me, confused. I handed him my phone with the text open, “give me a second.” I turned to the rest of the board. “Is this how your meetings usually go? Mr. Barrowman just sits in a corner with no input on how his life goes? I don’t believe it.” My own experience with my friend being mistreated was coming up ticking me off even more. “I highly doubt that. He is doing some research for a charity an you are asking him to forsake that because you don’t want to find a way to work with a disability?
“I’m sorry, but he is a wonderful person and you are an evil little man who should know better! Going under the assumption that you were more than likely picked on in high school. I don’t know how you got this far in life, but you need to change the way you deal with people. Let him do what he normally does and find a way to converse with him.” I jabbed my finger onto the table to drive my point home before telling John everything was okay and to finish his meeting.
I went back to my chair outside the room, glaring at the man, letting him know I will step in if he doesn’t do as I say. Secretly, I am scared shitless and hoping that I didn’t screw anything up for John. It took a few hours, but John finally finished his meeting (they started writing things down for him) and we left for lunch.
I managed to talk, err…text, him into just fish and chips from a street vendor instead of a fancy restaurant. Mostly so I could say that I took him out, hey it is a fantasy full-filling day so why not? After we went to a dog park to wait for a guide dog.
Once the German Shepherd arrived I gave him my number ad took my leave. He was in safe…paws for the rest of the day and I had a date with a Cathedral.
Tune in next week for Chapter Three