It felt lighter in the afternoon than it should, for this time of day. January turns itself around like that. The gardener came for the first time in a while, worked his ass off raking beds, blowing down the pavement, hauling away clumps of weeds and mud. I spent 45 minutes driving in to meet my client for a 45-minute meeting, then turned around and drove back home. Worked through lunch until 2, took the dog for a walk, laid back down again for a bit. Reflected on my last job, nine months going into an office: getting there before anyone else, swallowed by the jaws of the day. The gardener was on his own, and I asked where was his partner? A lot of work for just one guy. He asked if I’d ever maintained it myself and I had, I said: but we got too busy, and now we both work from home. He said I’m Danny, and reached out a dirty hand—we shook, and I walked on, wondering what he thought of me and my dog, my sweater and my coat, our house. We’re so much more than we appear to be on the outside, I hope.