By Duchess of Hackney

Hackney livin' n lovin'. Sarky frosty knickers always gobby, and perpetually pissed off for good reasons. Wind up merchant extraordinaire, but a nice old fashioned unusually unusual gal... Writing lots of wrongs.

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To be filed under bizarre stuff she does: An unintentional stalker

To be filed under bizarre stuff she does: An unintentional stalker

I did the darnedest thing a few Saturdays ago, actually it started on a Friday afternoon. I memorized a strangers phone number that I overheard her giving someone at a local supermarket.  Hear me out, it’s not what it sounds like.

Right there in the wine section of my local Morrisons (yes, I know Morrisons again), I  glanced at someone I thought I knew  from way back. When I  say way back I  mean waaaay back. Her name escaped me although the recognition factor hadn’t, but I didn’t want to embarrass myself by getting it wrong, besides, she was speaking with a guy who from what I could tell, was also a long lost friend.  When I heard her mention “Joane’s” name to the guy she was speaking with,  I knew she was the same gal that  lived in the same building as me in Finsbury Park in the 1980’s.  Joane also lived in the building.

I had just left home for the first time, the block of flats was on Seven Sisters Road and the window of my studio over- looked the park. It use to be a 10 storey hotel before it was converted into flats by Hackney Council, in-fact I recall the bar downstairs was  left  intact, but wasn’t functional. You want to know something else? I went to Hackney Housing (or whatever it was called back in the day) told them my mum was driving me nuts and I wanted OUT.  I was on the council waiting list for one month when the offer came through and I accepted.  They were mainly studios and small one bedrooms, so the council offered it to young singles and couples without children.

Anyway back to my creepy stalking tactics.  As she gave home phone number to the fella she was talking to, I did my best to  memorize it. The area code was 0208, so I didn’t have to memorize it nor the prefix as it is the same as mine, so as soon as I was out of sight, I tapped in the last four digits into my phone and proceeded to finish my shopping, still pondering if I should turn back to look for her. I didn’t. I’d only nipped out to get ingredients for a cake I was baking and was in a rush to get back home and quite honestly I looked and felt crappy, so wasn’t in the mood to be seen.

By Saturday evening curiosity got the best of me, I dialed the number and asked for Yvonne. The woman who obviously was my old buddy sounded very cautious wanting to know who I was. I recall her being a rather nervous person with a few quirks, so her reaction didn’t surprise me.  ” There’s  no Yvonne here”  she  replied.  “Do you  know  an Yvonne?” I asked. She replied:   “Yes, but who are you”?

Then it came to me, her name wasn’t Yvonne it was Yvette, so I came clean. Mentioned the address in Finsbury Park, told her I lived there and reminded her we hung out sometimes. She definitely remembered my name but couldn’t picture me. Imagine that, and I thought I was unforgettable.  She  wanted to know if I was the lady who kept smiling  at her, I didn’t recall that, then she asked if I was the same person crouching in front of the wines.  Aaah now, that I fessed up to. I spent some time checking out  some reduced price inexpensive Chilean Chardonnay, but didn’t admit it was also a way of eavesdropping.

I apologised for creeping her out and we spent over an hour catching up on old times, in between and the present. There’s going to be a meet up soon.

Even I surprise myself sometimes.










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