diet of worms
My master class in how to alienate and horrify the few people I am friendly with in Sydney continues apace. I am in the post office queuing to pick up a parcel (something I do frequently as 1. the postman refuses to ring the bell but would rather leave a ‘sorry I missed you’ card and 2. the postal service here does not allow one to organise a redelivery - honestly, the list of things that are quite unbelievably rubbish here could fill a small exercise book) and I bump into another AWAC (Animal Wife and Child - TA’s company employs an awful lot of ex-pats and in theory I have a ready-made social network). This - bumping into AWACs in the post office - happens to me a lot (see points 1 and 2) and I’m not very good at the unprepared for social interaction with people I hardly know but am desperate to be friends with, despite feeling like we have nothing in common. So, I put on a friendly face and make small talk - ‘hello other AWAC’s baby, hello other AWAC. Collecting a parcel?’ - and it was at this point that I made a fatal error of judgement, letting my excitement blind me to the lunacy of what I was about to admit.
‘Me?’ I said with a big, thrilled grin. ‘I’m here collecting my worms.’
The AWAC visibly flinched and stepped back a pace. ‘Live worms?’ She said, looking with horror at the innocent-looking parcel in my arms.
In for a penny, in for a pound, I thought. ‘Yes, for my composting bin.’
‘You have a garden?’
‘No. The bin is on the balcony.’ I could see her make a quick mental note - never, ever visit these people’s apartment.
We made our separate ways out of the shopping centre and I followed her up the road at a discrete distance until she entered her building and then I raced home to soak my peat block and examine my worms.