“My name is Bob Waller. I’m calling at Sylvie’s suggestion. I’m recently separated and she said you were in the same boat.” She felt no obligation to respond. “Hello…are you there?”
“Well, are you?”
“Am I what?”
“In the same boat?”
She had a vivid picture of herself and Bob Waller in a flimsy rowboat, in the middle of the ocean, wearing business clothes. She didn't want to be friendly or helpful. Sylvie had no idea how fat she’d become. This man would show up at her door and faint. What could she tell him: I’m very fat, can you take it?
“I guess,” she finally answered.
“I have a little boy who spends weekends with me. How about you?”
“How about me what?”
“Do you have children?” He asked hopefully. He would be disappointed if she were any less emotionally stranded than he.
This made him thoughtful and silent. So what? He was the one who wanted to row out of the harbor of loneliness into the port of togetherness. She considered offering him this metaphor but decided against it because she could feel herself seething with anger. Why? What did she have against this stranger?