The oddly attractive garda (who I no longer find in any way attractive) was checking tax and insurance discs outside town this morning. As soon as I saw his dark navy raincoat and luminous yellow waistcoaty thing in the distance my cheeks began to burn. For a mad moment I thought about doing a u-turn. But the editor’s a stickler for punctuality and it was already half-past-eight.
I drew up, face pulsing, furiously avoiding his eye. Ever since the day of shame I’ve avoided him as much as is humanly possible. It’s not easy in a town this size. But if not having to walk past the station means shopping at Black Jack’s instead of Londis and a higher grocery bill, then it’s worth every penny.
I still can’t believe he actually thought . . .that he thought me and . . no . . I still can’t think about it, let alone write it down.
Suffice to say, I wasn’t very friendly when he gestured at me to roll down the window and muttered a damp ‘hello’. I mumbled something back and he checked my tax and insurance discs in a very searching manner, then spent several minutes circling the back of my car.
‘It looks like everything’s in order here,’ he said finally, and just as he looked as though he was preparing to say something else I snapped ‘thankyou,’ and took off.
I watched his yellow waist-coated figure dwindle away to a distant speck in the rear view mirror. Then I rounded a bend and he was gone.