“Hello, I’m calling about one of your ads?” a voice questioned when I answered the phone.
“Which one? Writing, photography?” I replied.
“The babysitting one?” the voice replied. “Do I have the right number?” he mumbled.
“You probably do, I just wasn’t expecting any calls for that ad,” I reply quietly.
“Why? Cause you’re a guy?” he replies.
“That and I’m kind of over the age limit for babysitting kids,” I answer.
“Well, Oliver doesn’t really take to teenagers and most women seem more interested in me than the job once they meet me so I figured I’d try a guy. Also, most teenagers these days are preoccupied with phones and video games rather than actually looking after a kid. At least I know an adult will be more responsible,” he answers.
“Oliver’s your son?” I reply.
“Yes, and my name is Jack Maines, do you want to meet up for coffee this weekend or something so we can go over payment and whether I’ll drive him to your house or you’ll come to mine and hours?” he replies.
“Sure, I’d be fine with coming to you, it would also be easier to care for Oliver in an environment he’s comfortable in as well as entertain him,” I answer. “My small apartment’s not exactly made to entertain children.”
“You’ll have to calculate your gas bills every month so I can pay you extra for the drive, it’s quite far from the university,” he answers.
“You make it sound like you live in the top of a mountain,” I joke.
He laughed, “No, it’s just on the outskirts of the city, I only need the babysitting for a year and after that I might need a driver to get him to and from school and to watch him after school’s over, so the responsibilities might change or be temporary,” he continued.
“So, where do you want to meet for coffee, Mr. Maines?”
“Please call me Jack,” he informs me, but sense something in his tone, like he didn’t like being addressed as Mr. Maines.