Technicians had been at the house the day before, installing cable for my new upstairs neighbor. They hadn't finished the job properly, wires were exposed to the elements, and a storm was on the way. My landlord was concerned my neighbor and I were going to lose internet access, so asked if I could call the technicians.
My cafe is only down the street from my house, and I really didn't want to lose the internet, so I didn't think to question my landlord. But I was steamed. I had been right in the middle of a scene, and now I had to drop everything, walk home, and call my internet provider.
I bumped into my landlord in front of the house. I asked if he had called my upstairs neighbor. "No," he said. "She works full time, so I really didn't want to bother her when you were around."
Then he looked at me, noticed my coat and bag, and said, "Sorry, I thought you were home."
"I was just at the cafe down the street," I said.
"Must be nice having a life of leisure," he said.
I went inside then, because if I had talked with him any longer I might have snapped. Honestly, it's not entirely his fault. He doesn't know I'm writing. But still, life of leisure?!
I called the technicians, spent twenty minutes arguing on the phone, before finally realizing there was no way they'd come out to the house on my request, as the job was connected with my upstairs neighbor's account.
I went outside and wrapped a plastic bag over the wires. Then I called my landlord to tell him to do what he should have done originally: call my upstairs neighbors.
By the time I sat down to finish my scene, I had lost an hour of writing time.
But at least my lesson was learned. Next time my landlord calls during my work hours, I'm not answering the phone.
If I don't respect my time, how can I expect anyone else to?