I heard a faint thud on the other end of the line.
I didn't quite know what happened. The next thing I heard was Rainy
saying "friends!" although I definitely misheard her.
"You have friends there?" I said.
She mumbled something. The theme of this phone call, much like the one that preceded it, is that we just don't understand each other.
" she said.
Okay, maybe she didn't say that. But I did hear a faint thud on the other end of the line. And she was laughing, although I assumed it's because she saw someone she knew, which explains why I thought she said "friends!" Turns out she didn't.
" she said again.
A couple of days ago, as I entered my office building, I saw three women alight from a taxi. One of them, the second one to come out, struggled with going up the sidewalk. Next thing she knew, she was keeled, more or less, in between the open taxi door and the gutter, and her companions were helping her up. She was barefoot; her heels were stuck in the gutter.
I was looking at them, wondering if I'll have to help them at some point. But the woman got up properly, and instead, I smiled.
I smiled, and I felt guilty, because it seemed like, it seemed to me like, I was laughing.
"I'm sorry," I told Rainy, laughing. I was seated at the couch at my office's reception desk. "I claim responsibility for what happened."
She couldn't get her bearings.
Apparently she was laughing at me. Apparently I kept on talking when she wasn't expecting me to. But what can I do? We weren't understanding each other. The first phone call saw me in the echo-ey elevator lobby, and her, in a crowded McDonald's
branch. The second one, well, we never quite knew what was going on: there was some conversation, and then there wasn't, all while I was seated on a couch, and she was on the sidewalk, heading back to the office. And then, that faint thud.
"I fell!" she said. "And many people saw me!"
"It could be worse," I said. "Once I slipped down the stairs at the MRT station at Shaw. Tapos 'yung nasa harap ko, nadapa rin kasi nasipa ko siya.
"I don't think it could be worse."
She was laughing at me for talking, and she tried to angle her ear away from the phone, and then she fell. Karma, she'd call it. Yeah, in that case, I don't think it could be worse.