Thank You and Goodbye
“Ten floors. They say that’s ten stories, but trust me, there are more stories here than you can count.” That’s what Bob likes to say.
Bob has been the caretaker here for longer than I can remember. That’s not his real name, but that’s what I’m calling him for today. Here at Pachyderm Pavilion, we all kind of take him for granted. We forget he’s there, keeping the place running; sweeping the balcony walkways, mopping the stairwells, washing the graffiti off the walls. When the lifts break down, we all fuss and moan, but none of us call the engineers. Bob deals with that. We don’t drag the massive wheelie bins around, making sure they’re out to be emptied on bin day and tucked away at the back of the car park the rest of the week. To be honest, I don’t even know when bin day is. But Bob does.
It’s a beautiful place to live, Pachyderm Pavilion. We’re a varied lot, and a vibrant, lively community as a result. You’ll find all sorts here. Romantics and realists, idealists and nihilists, every outlook and every experience is represented here among the multitude who have called this place home. Sometimes people don’t stay long, but cast a long shadow. Some have lived here, on and off, since it was built.
Bob knows us all. Bob remembers our stories.
And now the place is closing down. I’m not sure why, but apparently we all have to go. Everyone’s moving out, most have already gone. The flats will soon all be empty, the walkways quiet, the lifts grounded for good. I asked Bob what he’s going to do, if he’s got a new job lined up. The answer surprised me- “I’m staying here, of course!”
We’ll all be gone, he says, but our stories will still be there. Someone will have to look after them. I’m not quite sure what he means, I admit. He’s a bit strange, is Bob.
But the truth is Bob IS Pachyderm Pavilion. The place never would have been anything without him. I loved living here, and I have Bob to thank for that. I’m heartbroken to say goodbye to the place, I’ll miss it terribly. But it’s good to know Bob will still be here, looking after it, looking after my stories.
If you’re ever in the area, pop in to Pachyderm Pavilion, find Bob, ask him to tell you some stories. He can be a bit weird at first, but he’s lovely.
And say thank you to him for me.