Giles was depressed. Or at least he thought he was. He believed he could do anything he set his mind to, but everytime he did he felt held back by something beyond his control. It was frustrating. It was demotivating. It became depressing.
One day he was trudging through the damp, oppressing streets he always walked along when a stranger with a darkened look looked him straight in the eyes as if looking for a glimmer of the hope he longed for. Giles had none to give right now. The stranger walked ever closer, never breaking eye contact. Giles slowed to a stop though he couldn’t understand why.
” My name is Peter,” said the stranger, “I’m lost.”
“What’s the trouble? Where are you headed? I don’t know this city as well as I’d like, but I’m sure I can at least guide you in the right direction.” Giles had never really strayed far from the places he knew and rarely walked a different route to the one he now took to get anywhere. Still, something about Peter hit Giles and made him want to know more.
“I’m looking for the Tower District. I was supposed to meet someone there but so far everyone has either ignored me or sent me to an area that looks nothing like it should be.”
“That’s a mighty large area. In fact, we’re on the outskirts of it now.” The buildings that surrounded them now were almost all 16 storeys high if not more. Giles was curious how people could send someone the wrong way. Or had they? Could it be that this stranger had no idea what he was looking for? It was hard to miss the Tower District; the name was pretty self-explanatory.
“Oh! That’s a relief. Though I’m not sure this is what I expected. There aren’t many buildings made using bricks or blocks of stone around are there?”
Had this guy ever seen a city? Dumbfounded, Giles replied, “Bricks and stone aren’t really common in cities. I hope you weren’t expecting towers worthy of a castle. They’re all residential or office buildings. Were you looking for somewhere in particular? I can take you there if you’d prefer.”
“I’m sorry, I don’t have a particular place to go to at the minute. I was told to go to the general area and then wait to be told where to go and when. I know this sounds ridiculous, but it was all very last minute organising matters today.” Peter had sounded like the intelligent type until this comment. Giles now wondered what sort of organisation required waiting for instructions and if they’d ever come.
“Well, alright,” Giles said raising an eyebrow, “I’ll take you to the nearest tea room to where we are now. I have nothing much to do at the minute and it sounds like you’ll be alone for a while in a place that’s alien to you. It’s good to know someone in a place you don’t recognise.”
And so it was. Together they went and sat down in Geraldine’s Tea Room to eat cake and share a pot of tea.
(End of Part I)