Two young men rang my doorbell yesterday. As I opened the door, one said 'Hello, darling'. I looked at them, somewhat askance, and said, 'What did you just say to me?' And so they repeated it. I said they had no business addressing me like that: they did not know me, nor I them, and it was impertinent and familiar. Oh, the young man said, it was just his usual way of greeting people. Well, I replied, it would be a good idea to think more carefully about how to address people, such as total strangers, from whom you are trying money for your particular cause'. So they left, empty handed. I am still experiencing a mini-seethe. Bloody cheek! I say to myself. One wonders whether those employed to do door to door canvassing ever get any training on courtesy and sales techniques.
And this morning, after going out for the morning walk, I found I had to go and find a shop that was open - it is Easter Sunday, after all, and most shops are (rightly) closed. I am cooking some more quince jelly, and found I did not have enough sugar, so tried one of the nearby shops, and it was open. Laden with my sugar, I decided to have a peek at the viewing office of proposed new units, in a nearby area formerly used for industrial purpose but now sold off and to be 'developed'.
In I went, and said I'd like to look at their display. I do not want to buy a unit: I merely wondered about how it might affect or change the area. They wanted my name and address. This made me feel stroppy, so I refused and left. I do not want to be part of their data base. I had just bought sugar from the shop, and they did not ask for my particulars. Grrr.
It is interesting that in such small ways I find myself becoming more assertive. In the days of yore, female assertiveness was generally much less common, and there was a far greater expectation of courtesy, both in private and in public interactions. And, having had to pussy-foot around in the past with such people as husbands, and step-daughters, it has taken some time for me to release mists and fumes of assertiveness into the ether. What else might transpire? So when I feel lonely, even as a result of my own decision not to drive away from home for Easter, I can muse about not having to try to please or placate husbands. (They had their good points, but at times failed to develop or use them. Doubtless they felt the same about me. Well, nobody's perfect.)
Today's batch of quince jelly is sitting glowingly on my kitchen bench, so something was accomplished. It tastes good. And the colour is makes me feel quite beatific. And tonight I did a fairly good sort of all my muddled collections of papers. Things look quite tidy and organised now. Let me see if I can keep up the good work.