Stepping outside onto the balcony, the wind pushes back almost as hard as if I weren’t protected by the 30-something storeyed building in which I live. I stop a foot away from the balcony railing as is my custom, and take stock of my neighbours.
3 levels up, I immediately spot him. The thick figure of the candle man. He has his hands on his hips and is standing square to the window, like he’s challenging the world to deny his presence. I can clearly see the drapes on either side of him, but for some reason he remains indiscernible. I stand and challenge him back with a stare. Almost a minute passes, and he does not move. Just when I am about to go inside to warm up, he turns, and behind him I see another small flame is lit. The candle man disappears into the deeper shadows of the far side of the room. I follow suit, and with a violent shiver, hop in through the opening in my sliding doors.
I take a seat by my computer and look out at his solitary flame. I wonder at its significance, or even if there is any. Maybe he is a migraine sufferer, who can stand only the meak light of a candle. Maybe he was a sailor who got lost at sea, and when he was rescued by naval officers, vowed to light a candle every day until his ship’s captain is found. Maybe he’s a druggie. I decide I will find out somehow.
I am back from my little excursion to Building D. As could be expected, I didn’t find out anything, but I did meet a few of my neighbours’ dogs.