The doorbell terrifies me. It’s not that I have a phobia of doorbells themselves, but when the flat buzzer rings, it always gives me a fright. Ninety nine percent of the time it’s just the postman… or the Asos person… or the Amazon guy… so when I’m not expecting a delivery and the buzzer lets off its shrill ring, I freeze.
My family and the majority of my friends don’t live in Bolton, and it was be very unexpected for a member of Tom’s clan to drop in on me unannounced, so who on earth wants me?!
All sorts of possibilities bombard my mind – the police (highly unlikely), rogue kids just having laugh (has actually happened), a random woman asking for someone called Laura (also has actually happened), some scary person who is going to break in and start banging on my front door, or perhaps a neighbour?
Living in a flat is weird… you may think that being so close to your neighbours physically means that you get to know everyone well, but that’s definitely not true. Tom lived in an apartment in Manchester city centre for two years and we never ever ever got to know the people either side and opposite him, in fact, we hardly saw them. And in my last year of university, we only had contact with the flat opposite when one of the residents got locked out and asked to borrow our phones. I feel like the close proximity of being in flats makes neighbour interactions more awkward somehow.
So when I’m not expecting the buzzer to sound and it does, rather than doing the sensible thing – answering it and asking who it is, I frantically close the blinds and pretend I’m not in, hoping that whoever it is doesn’t somehow get inside the complex and start peering in my windows or God forbid, knock directly on my door.
I think part of this comes down to how although I am a proper adult (I turned the grand old age of twenty two last month!), and I am one of the rightful tenants of this flat (along with Tom) and I pay my bills every month and have a proper job… I still kind of feel like a kid who is playing houses. I feel like I’m acting every time I have a rare interaction with a neighbour or collect one of my (*cough* many) Asos parcels from the DPD guy.
I should give myself more credit and try to stop feeling like I’m just playing at being a grown up… and that probably involves being braver when it comes to answering the doorbell, as scary as that may be!