Sad Man Sitting at Cafe Think Hold Chin Looking to Window

A Change

For twelve years, Andrew Barker had arrived at the office spot on 8:30 am and left at 4:30 pm. There were two dozen people who worked at the office, and he could possibly give the first or last name of eight of them, for Andrew stayed at his desk, didn’t socialise.

He worked from 8:39; as he had to plug in his computer, start it up, run a diagnostic, while putting down his brief case, and organising his desk.

He stopped what he was doing at 10:00 for the tea break, resumed at 10:15 until 12:30 when he went to lunch and returned spot on 1:30. He took another tea break at 3:00 then began shutting down at 4:20, doing a defrag of his computer, packing his bag, and then, shutting off his computer, and unplugging it.

Andrew Barker would leave his office at 4:30 pm.

He would drive home, arriving at 5:07. He would greet his wife and child, then go to his room, remove his suit, hanging it in the closet, check his shirt in case it needed to be washed. If it did, he put it and his underwear in the basket, before stepping into the shower.

He would take a brisk shower, then dress in casual slacks and shirt.  He would emerge from his room at 5:30, reach the dinner table. Everything would be ready, and the meal would commence.

There might be some conversation, but over the years the meal was mostly in silence. At the completion of the meal, Andrew would compliment his wife, make a positive statement to his son, then go to the bathroom to brush his teeth.

He would then watch the early news, then the more international.

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His family would select the next presentation. He did not find it interesting would go to his study or the porch, (depending on the season) and read.

On weekends he would get up early for exercise, often jogging, return for breakfast, then take the family shopping. Afternoons, depending on whether or not his family had set an activity were blank.

Over the years his wife and child set exclusionary activities. They would leave after shopping and not return until late. Sometimes his son stayed the week end with a friend. This meant Andrew was on his own for dinner. Originally it would only be Saturday, but during the past two years it was was Sunday as well.

The reason he reflected on this pattern of his life was that when he arrived home on Monday, his wife and child had gone, and a divorce petition was on the table.

His wife claimed neglect, irreconcilable differences,  demanded full custody of the child whom she claimed he ignored.

The divorce took Andrew by surprise. He had no idea that his wife felt neglected, that they had differences or that he ignored his child.


What do you think?

Written by jaylar