Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Shouty people.

I was coming back from the shops yesterday and there was this woman waiting outside the main door to my block of flats. She stops me as I go to open the door, and in this rather peremptory manner she asks me if I know anything about a flat to rent. I tell her I don't. She keeps me hanging around whle she rummages in her purse for a bit of paper where she's written down the details: apparently she has arranged to meet the lettings agent, R., at six. (It's now ten to, something she confirms with a grudging look at her own watch.) I confirm that she's at the right address. She asks if I'm R. I tell her that no, I am not R. She asks which flat is being let. I tell her I don't know. She won't accept this and asks me again, a bit louder. I repeat that I don't know. She asks me where the lettings agent is. I tell her that I don't know, but that R. should be here at six. I ask her if she'd like to wait in the lobby; she angrily refuses.

Durng the whole conversation she's getting snappier and snappier, with much tutting and sighing and rolling of eyes. I'm trying to find a polite way to disengage myself from the situation, but she's just asking more and more questions. Finally she asks one that I not only can't answer, but can't understand. I ask her to repeat it. She rolls her eyes so hard I think they're going to fall out, and repeats herself. I tell her I don't understand, and apologise for my weak Castilian. She repeats the question several times more, louder and louder, until she's yelling at me, yelling this incomprehensible question in my face like an insult. I apologise again and tell her that I still don't understand. "Well, you should understand!" she screams at me. "You should understand! You should understand!"

At this point I decide that hanging around this crazy freak is over and above the call of duty. I tell her to stop shoutng at me and finally get the door open. I hurry inside but the woman's shrieks of "You should understand!" don't abate. I snap. As I close the door I say, in English, "You are a very rude person!" and then practically run up the stairs.

I know that it's not really acceptable to do that (have a go at someone in English when you know they don't speak it, I mean) but I just lost it. I mean, all I was doing was trying to help her. I still don't get what she was so pissed off about.

I really hope she doesn't move into my flats. I think I've had more than my fair share of psycho neighbours.

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