We were talking about point-of-view in class and the module tutor told us to rewrite a story from a new point of view. So I took a new look at the piece I wrote last week, but in first person this time!

Becoming a Writer – Week Four


I like sitting around and watching people. You can tell a lot about a person by how they act when they think no one is watching. Sitting on this balcony is the only time I get all week to people watch, and I love every minute of it. I hate having to keep things from my family, but if they knew I had a couple hours between my English Literature and working at the local mall, they would just want me to get to work earlier. The time I spend people watching is good inspiration for my stories. It’s productive, even if they don’t see it that way.

My usual hiding place on the ground floor was taken by another student on the phone with someone, but I found a great seat on the balcony. I could see the entire room; all the people going from class to class blurred together, except for the girl in the blue sweater. She stuck out from the background of neutral coats like a flower in a field of snow. The students running around and all the sounds made me feel like I was sitting front row balcony for a performance. It reminded me of the time I saw The Barber of Seville with my mom. There was constant music during the opera, kind of like how there’s always noise in a room full of people. The girl in blue would be Rosina, the cheerful and optimistic main character. I couldn’t decide who the other characters would be, but maybe this was just the first scene. None of the other characters were there yet.

I looked around at the other people in the room, trying to find Rosina’s Lindoro. The less I focused on the sounds around me, the more they started to sound like actual music. As I decided against each young man for whatever reason, I could almost hear the bass and tuba in the drone of the heating system, the lyrical harmonies of the woodwinds and strings in the chatter of my fellow students, and the trills of the brass instruments in the monotone squeak of the automatic door behind me. I gave up searching for Lindoro; maybe it wasn’t time for Rosina to meet him yet. I looked over at her again. I didn’t want to be caught staring, but she was hard to look away from. She looked so happy, chatting with her friends. That’s what I want: to be able to just be happy, without wondering if I’m allowed to. The girl in the blue sweater, glanced up toward the balcony and caught my eye. Blushing, I jumped up from my seat and hurriedly wandered away.

I didn’t have to be at work for another hour, but I couldn’t go back to my balcony. This was my problem, I never wanted to bother anyone. I’d go out of my way to not make anyone uncomfortable, because I hate conflict more than anything. It was easier to agree to get a fulltime job when my family suggested it than it was to explain how hard it would be. I wish I was like Rosina. She wasn’t ever afraid to go out and get what she wanted, exactly the way she wanted it.

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