It was an exercise I did as part of a creative writing class, in which we had to write a story in 100 words. My favourite fiction is sparse and pared down, so I loved this challenge. The starting point was the need for the rather clipped language, and the character grew out of that. I'd also not long moved to the north, and found that people really are friendlier ...
It doesn't even have a title - that would have used precious words - so here is my 100 word story:
Chatting to people on trains. More Jean’s thing. Knitting. Photos of grandchildren. She had the knack. Talked for both of us.
Woman opposite looks up from puzzle book. Smiles. Must be reasonably presentable. Managed to shave. Last clean shirt.
Scenery changing. Brick to stone. Strange.
Alison at Kings Cross. Sorry Dad. Would if could. Crouch End house tiny. Three kids. Better with Andrew. All that space. Meet new people. Lunch club. Gardening.
They took Poppy though. Silly little dog. Jean’s. But company. Andrew’s wife allergic.
Woman opposite opens handbag. Hands me tissue. There you go love. You’ll be all right.