What can YOU say in six sentences?
Later on Friday morning, when she collected Bridget she found that the village grapevine was as rampant and efficient as ever and that her mother had not been left in ignorance of the latest gossip, inescapably corroborated by Jenna’s flushed face and puffy eyes. “I just hope you know what you’re doing” was all that was said (unmentioned concern at the rumours about Pete preventing full scale condemnation) but Jenna had to assess from her mother’s expression whether names…Continue
When I went to my doctor, for him to confirm that I was expecting a second child, he told me I should never have got pregnant again, and reminded me to begin taking the oral contraceptive pill as soon as the baby was six weeks old.
In the eighth month they said the baby was breech, my uterus was heart-shaped and he could not be turned.
My waters broke halfway through a European Cup match, the hospital telephonist was asleep and the night staff…
He hadn’t needed telling to put the bike out of sight round the back of the house nor, she heard, as she filled the kettle at the scullery sink, to lift the crying Bridget from her pram ... cries that ceased immediately as he put the tip of his finger into her milk-seeking mouth.
She’d witnessed in her friends the virtually instantaneous transformation from girl to mother each had made after giving birth so on one level was unsurprised at her own ‘grown-up’…
The gym I go to has a small hairdressing salon, reached by a flight of open stairs. Two of the hairdressers (stylists?) are turn-sideways-and-they-disappear would-be starlets, whose every ascent and descent of this staircase is a full-scale production, high stiletto heels, skinny leggings, careful make-up, sparkly cardigan, gi-normous pocketed jangly handbag and fixed-but-animated expression.
They clearly live in constant expectation of being…Continue
It had started as a bit of fun, a bit of light relief at the end of what had been an exceptionally drab day, and once the conversation paused she really hadn’t expected him to do any more than pick up the packet of cigarettes he’d bought, along with his change, and leave. But he’d caught her glancing at the clock, had realised that it was a couple of minutes after closing time (it was he that had delayed her) and noting her tiredness he offered to run her home (although…Continue
Sanctuary lasted only as long as it took me to open my eyes, momentarily closed in relief as I shut the back door behind me. Through the inner door of the kitchen, across the narrow hall and through my open bedroom door, I saw that he had followed and was watching me, grey-jacketed elbows akimbo, blue striped shirt exposed, red face close to the glass as, eyes shaded, he peered in. Instinctively I ran and pulled the door shut to blot him out, then a silent shriek at my…Continue
Woken by an echoing conversation concerning a clothes prop I lay and contemplated the bareness of the new room whose strangeness – no curtains, no carpets - had delayed my getting to sleep the night before.
While Mum and Dad continued to talk in the shade beneath my window I climbed out of bed for my very first morning view, limited by the chest-high windowsill. The high sky - much more of it than I had been used to - hummed with an immaculate…
We had a good time in Nelson getting initiated into various drills, rifle and bayonet ... had a splendid send‑off ...being banqueted, entertained and photographed. We travelled by train and boat to Victoria, and at every station and landing were most heartily cheered ... we were given quarters in some exhibition buildings, served with mattresses and blankets and camped on the floors, the rations being substantial and plentiful.
I don’t taste food when I’m cooking in case it tastes horrible and I have to find something else to serve up.
I don’t research destinations before I visit so as to be able to discover them without prejudice once I arrive.
I don’t read the blurb on the cover of a book to remind myself of the story just before I start reading, knowing that it informed my decision to buy it in the first place.…Continue
His father had described it as “the most picturesque town I have seen” but today Nelson’s mountains were cloud-covered and the assorted 'West Kootenay men' less than happy with the hanging around outside while someone with an eye to history, and a camera, did his bumptious best to arrange them all (somewhat prematurely since he had to start again when another group emerged from where they’d been partly ‘processed.’) By dint of being more or less… Continue
Christmas Day, coming up to midnight and my Dad as usual refusing to stay over, we all gather in the porch to wave him off. The first person out fails to lock the snib in the open position and I, the last out and noticing that it is snowing slightly, firmly pull the door shut behind me to keep the heat in.…
She’d spent the first week rehearsing lust, which didn’t go unnoticed by his wife who was also her aunt. Having been taken the same way, when only a couple of years older, this aunt smiled, understood and did her best to most tactfully warn.
In the second week, unheeding, alone now and no less hungry, she bought a bikini in the sale and sunbathed, toasting her body along with her imagination as she read on the beach. Tall for her age, and the…Continue
Dora hadn’t realised, when she asked them all to ‘smile and say cheese’ that they were already laughing at Luther’s sotto voce comments on her inability to hold the camera level, (“that horizon’ll never be straight, not in a month of Sundays – we’ll feel seasick just to look at it”) and his debating on whether it’d be their heads or their feet that she’d…Continue
The locals called it ‘Stilly’ – a South Durham pit village where the pit was long gone but the community remained in the two-up two-down Victorian terraced houses. And it was on this sense of community that she pondered as she sat surrounded by scattered children’s books and an appreciative crowd of mothers, their pyjama-ed children running in and out of the front door which opened directly onto the warm September evening.
The women mostly had…Continue