Perhaps it would be good form to look into her ginormous handbag, but that's just not a place I'm willing to journey to. Ever.
"Did you clean the patio and the balcony?" I ask. Like I do every single time. It's like we have our scripted Q & A routine.
"Yes, finish... FINISH" she replies, and looks at me like my IQ is not quite up to par. Perhaps she should spell it out for me. It's clear to her that this poor white lady with weird hair and much too much metal attached to her oddly shaped ears, who spends all of her time with her nose in or in the vicinity of that computer is lacking in not just one but several different departments. In her brain that is. Mostly to do with understanding plain speech. And what's with the obsession with horizontal stripes anyway?
However, today, the time has come for me to deviate from the pattern.
"But...?" I continue and start walking towards the patio doors.
I see the look of amazement with a coat of disbelief on her face.
Just this once I'm not going to cave. I will not be bullied. I will get my BarcaLoungers wiped down. Even if it's the last thing I'll do. By gosh and darn and all that jazz.
I will enjoy my summer in the sun. I am not giving up.
"Do you understand what I mean by 'patio' and 'balcony'?" I ask her while wildly pointing out towards the patio doors and through the ceiling to somewhere where the balcony is supposedly located. At least in my mind. But there are no guarantees. What my signage lacks in accuracy it gains in wildness and bravado. And I'm happy with that. Although, it always photographs as if I'm having a grand mal seizure, just standing up and rarely frothing at the mouth.
"Ye-es. Fi-nish!" she drags out the words with a look of pity on her face. It is obvious to her that this lady, who, judging by the empty wine bottles she keeps finding from various places and the glasses with the same lip gloss stain on each and every one of them, drinks much too much for her own good, and is slowly losing whatever sense she has left.
"But you haven't even opened the door?" I tell her matter-of-factly, "There are cobwebs on the door that have clearly been there for weeks now," I continue.
But I can see I have already lost her, and anything to do with 'cobwebs' is clearly not registering. As a last resort I open the door out to the patio and step out. The patio is covered in red dust, and there are strands of dead grass on the table and chairs.
I walk over to the BarcaLoungers covered in the remains of what must have been one happening pigeon fiesta, and turn to look at her.
She isn't there. There is no one else but me on the patio. I hear the front door slam shut.
Tomorrow is another day.
Just putting it out there for the universe to settle.
Bring it on.