© Bruce Goodman 9 August 2015
Maribella was horrified. Biddy’s husband hadn’t been buried for two months and already Biddy was cavorting around like her husband hadn’t died. Two months! Biddy had joined the Forest and Bird Society and she went off on a hike wearing the most technicoloured cardigan under the sun. It was a disgrace.
Maribella’s husband had died over three years ago, and Maribella maintained a dignified composure. She had, at a great niece’s wedding, added a little slither of purple fabric to her otherwise black outfit. Apart from that, she knew how to behave as a grieving widow.
“You are a disgrace!” said Maribella to Biddy. “A disgrace!”
“There are only two things you can do when someone dies,” replied Biddy. “Either you can wait to die yourself or you can get on with it.”
“Well, unlike you,” said Maribella, “I loved my husband.”
Biddy was hurt by that but said nothing. She trotted off to the next Forest and Bird Society’s hike as sprightly as a fantail; as colourful as a parrot; as song-filled as a thrush. Of course she missed her husband. Of course she did! But she wasn’t going to make everyone else go into mourning.