“Can’t you hear that?” Town and Country asks as we stand in the middle of an empty room. I think it used to be a bedroom. Or maybe this used to be the library. With the house under renovation - it is hard to tell what used to be where. "Be more specific. It’s New York. I hear lots of things,” I reply. “The television,” he says.
“Are you high? Or do you hear high pitched things like canines?" I ask. He laughs. “Next door – the neighbors…I had to stop using this room because I couldn’t stand the noise,” he explains. I shake my head. “You don’t hear that?” he demands, somewhat amused, somewhat surprised. “Nope. Then again – my brother accuses me of being deaf, select hearing type of thing,” I joke. But really - it is somewhat true. Desi Brother says I have selective hearing and selective memory when it comes to “our discussions” – especially when I may be in err. Tee hee hee. And my mother and aunt have hearing issues, so I am pretty sure I will endure a reduction in hearing when I am their age.
“However, there is nothing wrong with my eyesight. I can spot a spider three miles away,” I reply. “I’ll bet,” he replies. “Come here, press your ear against this wall. Tell me you cannot hear that,” he insists and pulls me towards him and up against the wall. We face each other, me with my right ear to the wall, him with his left ear. He has very brown eyes. He nods his face and whispers, “Do you hear it?” he asks. “No,” I whisper back. He shakes his head and makes a face. So I listen harder and still hear nothing. And shake my head and step away from the wall.
“I can’t believe you can’t hear that,” he says and we leave the room. “Hearing is not my forte, I guess,” I reply. “Well – I don’t want to listen to that – so I had the contractor rip open the wall in the other room. I think we have an inch to work with for soundproofing. Come, let's take a look," he says. “Great, and is that inch firm? Did you or the contractor measure it?” I ask. “No, I eyeballed it,” he says. “What?” I demand and stop walking. He keeps walking and when he realizes I am not following, he stops and looks back at me. “What, what?” he asks.
“Eyeballed it? I am sure your eyeballs are lovely, but we are going to need a tape measure, camera and some paper. Luckily I have all of them in my bag,” I reply. He shrugs, I walk past him and into the adjacent room. I find the hole in the wall and bend down to review. Hhhmm. It is close to an inch. I open my bag and take out the tape measure.
“Well?” he asks. “Not an inch,” I reply and think about what options we have. He keeps talking, I take some notes and at some point I stop talking, thinking, and listening. I suddenly have to get out of here. I am enjoying this, working on his house, spending time with him. This is fine – except, I am panicking, I start to feel those smooshy, mooshy feelings for him. It is bad enough that I find him attractive. It is worse since he is a client.
Right now – I don’t care about this wall. I have to get out his house. Now.