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2020-08-01 / 5:59 p.m.

I offered Becky a lift almost straight away after we first started working together. I could have driven various different routes, some of them much faster, but from the very beginning I enjoyed her company. A rare occurrence, especially so early in the morning. First we made small talk, then it was intermittent silence, less awkward as those initial weeks passed. We eventually became so used to sitting next to each other that we’d blurt out our thoughts before we even realised we’d formed the words in our mouths. Stuck in traffic I’d remind her that the fact that it rains is fascinating. “Isn’t it mad that water falls from the sky?”, I’d ask her almost every other day, sitting behind the same car as yesterday, stopped at the same red light as the day before. Raindrops running down the windscreen, the wipers struggling to keep up, squeaking loudly and out of time to the low music in the background. She told me to watch Groundhog Day, but I refused on the basis that I’d already gone almost three decades without having seen it, and what were three decades more?
She’d sit with her right foot on the seat, tightening and retying her crimson boots, double knotted, wondering aloud if birds might one day need a visa to migrate, both of our eyes following a starling as it soared across the bridge.
I savoured her company while I drove. Stopping, changing gears. Starting off again at the next green light. Work was too busy to really talk, which suited us both just fine. In traffic one morning, with an uncharacteristically sour look on her face she told me that she wouldn’t mind too much if a virus came and killed off most of the city, just so we could get where we were going that little bit faster. For the sake of a lie in. Just so we could be who we wanted to be.

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