I eavesdrop on the couple sitting next to me. Two things become apparent:
…They are planning the ultimate holiday.
…They hate each other.
It is the hatred of familiarity – barbed leaping impatience that turns what should be joyous into something tense and spiteful.
Their plight is fascinating to me and I begin typing out their story – small and discrete at first, but then, possessed of a curious desire to reveal my voyeurism, I increase the font size so that they cannot fail to see.
‘Why are you always going off on pointless tangents? Don’t close the itinerary! I hadn’t finished…that man’s writing down what we say…Look…I want you to do something about it…Because it’s creepy…God you’re so weak!’
In even larger font I type:
‘…THINK THEY’RE ONTO ME.
THEY SEEM SO SAD.’
My phone rings which has the effect of shielding me from conflict
‘Hey…Nothing much…Sure, I’ll pop around.’
As I chat the couple leave separately.
I have been immeasurably cruel.
Or I have done them a great kindness.