Rear Window

The most common question people ask me is why I became an author. I never have a satisfactory response to this query. The truth is I haven’t been certain of the answer until today.

Once or twice a week I take an early morning bike ride around the lake not far from our house. And when I say early, I mean early. Sunrise. I ride along bike paths from my home to the lake and back again. It’s a round trip of 22 kilometres. It’s peaceful and relaxing and allows me the solitude and time to reflect on the present, the future and, of course, my novels.
The view from my bike seat
But it struck me this morning that I enjoy the excursion for one other reason – the peek I get into other peoples’ lives.

As I ride by the homes that back onto the bike paths I glance into the window of a townhouse and see a middle-aged woman in a faded dressing gown, staring seriously into an open fridge as though the contents will provide her with the meaning she’s been seeking.

In another house I spy an elderly woman in a comfy recliner. She is watching television, the early news I guess. There’s an expression of severe consternation on her face. It’s not even six, yet she’s already dressed in a skirt, blouse and lace-up shoes. Hot rollers cover her head. I muse on the possibilities. Where is she heading today and what news story has concerned her so?

In another home a man pounds away on a treadmill that’s situated in his living room. A woman, his wife I presume, sits straight-backed at a table drinking coffee. There’s a newspaper in front of her. The living room overlooks the lake and I find myself wondering why he is not running outdoors. Agoraphobia? Ornithophobia?
I know, it all seems a bit creepy. It’s a bad habit, I admit. But don’t worry, I’m not gawking through key holes or drilling peep holes in walls … yet.

So that’s the answer, I suppose. Why did I become an author? I simply like creating stories about people. As my legs turn the bike pedals I am working out my creativity as well as my body. And perhaps one day during a ride I’ll see something I can turn into a nifty premise for a novel.

No comments:

Post a Comment