By the time I reached the station the train had gone. I had been going out with Dolores for almost three years. In fact I was about to pop the question. I was planning how best to do it when she announced it was all over.
“It’s over,” she said. “I’m eloping with Patrick.”
I couldn’t believe it. I went outside and stood there looking at nothing. Eloping with Patrick? Eloping with Patrick?
I saw Dolores leave the house and head for the train station. Someone said she and Patrick were heading into the distant blue. I was at a complete loss. After half an hour or so I thought I’d race to the station and plead with her to give me another chance. But the train had gone.
Randy had “pinched” Willy’s girlfriend of two years. Needless to say, Randy and Willy were no longer friends. Willy decided that revenge was the best option. Randy was on Willy’s unwritten list: To Be Murdered.
Of course Willy didn’t want to spend the rest of his years behind bars. An undetected murder would take some creative planning. There were two viable options: accident or natural causes. All other forms of death could be construed as being possibly murderous.
Willy didn’t have enough knowhow to construct a death by natural causes. You would have to be a doctor or a chemist of some sort to engineer that. Constructing an accident was the best and only option. There was no hurry. Willy had a new girlfriend. The old girlfriend was a distant memory, but the memory of cheating Randy was still fresh in Willy’s mind.
A car accident? An industrial accident? (After all, Randy worked in a flour mill). Falling off a roof or out of a tree? Something like that perhaps.
The mutual rancour between Randy and Willy grew. Willy’s new girlfriend, the literary Sandy, oft quoted William Blake:
I was angry with my friend; I told my wrath, my wrath did end. I was angry with my foe: I told it not, my wrath did grow.
Willy was now just two days away from implementing his carefully planned murder. That was when Randy’s plan was enacted. It was a perfect murder. Willy, the murder-planner, is no more.
Ayleen decided to bake a cake. I mean, what else was there to do on a cold rainy day? Besides, her boyfriend, Rodney, was coming to dinner. There was nothing different or special about that but Ayleen thought that to finish with a delectable dessert might sweeten the reality that she was going to announce: as far as Ayleen was concerned the relationship was over.
Ayleen had good reason for it. They had never fallen in love; it was a relationship of convenience. It was “someone to take out”, especially if a group of friends went out partying. But now, Ayleen thought that having a relationship of convenience was a hindrance to finding the right person. Who is going to invite her out if she is already attached? This business with Rodney has to end to make room for whoever was around the corner.
The cake baking went satisfactorily. It was a blueberry yogurt cake. She’d used the recipe quite often. It looked nice enough. A slice of the cake with a dollop of ice cream would be an adequate introduction to her announcement.
Rodney was the fourth guy she’d baked a blueberry yogurt cake for in the last six weeks. When on earth would the right guy come along?
Bridgette was having none of it. This was the third time she had told her new boyfriend that she didn’t take sugar in her coffee and the third time he’d sugared it. Didn’t he listen?
He said it was no big deal. When he moved in he said he wanted to sleep on the side of the bed nearest the door – “Because guys end up going to the bathroom in the night more often” – but did she listen? No. She was in the bed and nearest the door before he could undo his shirt buttons.
Anyway, said Bridgette, it really annoyed her the way he drove the car – and it was her car. He drove along glancing at the rear vision mirror like it was an obsession. Glance glance glance. He said he was looking out for cops. There might be a cop following. So Bridgette asked what have you got to hide from cops? And he said the only thing hidden around here is your brains. He meant it as a joke, but Bridgette flung her sugared coffee (by now it was thankfully cold) all over her new boyfriend and he said things that shall go here unrecorded.
Everything grew into a momentous argument and Bridgette said she would show him around and said “I’ll start by showing you the door”. He told her to jump in the lake, he was going nowhere, but she was welcome to get in her car and go off to where he didn’t care. He repeated that he was going nowhere, and Bridgette said “It’s obvious you’re going nowhere and never will.”
Bridgette said she was sorry, and he said “Try telling that to someone who gives a shit.”
He’s gone now. Thankfully. Bridgette realized she had made a mistake with him initially. It was her fault for inviting him into her life in the first place. One day the right guy will come along. You never know from one minute to the next what exciting person Fate is going to throw in your path. Tonight she’s going down to the pub to see if Mister Right is in fact waiting just around the corner.
Velma Clout was having a bad morning. It wasn’t twenty-four hours since her boyfriend of eighteen months had left her. And what a relief it was. But the morning saw her with a mighty headache and a massive hangover. She had celebrated the boyfriend’s rejection with a wee bottle of wine or two. Honestly, his leaving was what she herself had wanted to do for a good several months but she was too nice. But now it had happened and there was no going back. If only she had celebrated with more restraint and then she could enjoy his absence without feeling like death warmed up.
Her cell phone rang.
It was her boyfriend of eighteen months. Did she want to get back together? He was upset. He had made a mistake. He knew only too well that Velma wouldn’t have the heart to say “No!”
“Yes!” said Velma. “I’ll see you here for lunch.”
Oh why did she do that? Why why why? Why was she so stupid? So silly? So weak? Why why why? Why couldn’t she take a stand?
Suddenly, grabbing a bag of stuff and her purse, Velma got in her car and headed for a day’s outing at the beach. It was for her the first independent thing she had done in ages. She was now the one doing the breaking up; not him. Oh the freedom that went with that! Velma wound down the car window and sang her heart out fortissimo. It was 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover all the way to the seaside.
When Clyde got out of bed that morning he had no idea (who does?) how his day would end.
There he was in early afternoon innocently sitting on the window ledge of his girlfriend’s new apartment when suddenly Tracey pushed him out the seventeenth story window.
As she pushed him suddenly out she was heard to exclaim, “Die you selfish toad. I love Shane now and I do this for Shane.” What Tracey didn’t realize was that her accommodation unit was set in the middle of a high-rise rooftop garden. Clyde fell no more than three feet onto a soft paving.
Clyde got up, brushing a little sandy gravel off his knees. He was half bemused and half shocked. It was the last thing he had been expecting.
Tracey had jumped out the window herself when she realized her murderous plot had backfired. She turned her shock and agitation into concocted horror. Naturally she pretended it was a practical joke. She was merely playing around. Of course she didn’t love Shane; she didn’t even like him. Shane was a creep. Everyone knew that the window seventeen stories up opened onto a rooftop frequently used for barbeques.
Clyde didn’t believe her for one minute. The rooftop was surrounded by a safety balustrade. Clyde picked up Tracey and threw her over it. She almost floated down to splat amongst the ant-like figures busy about their business way, way in the street below.
It certainly pays to check before throwing someone from a great height. That got rid of Tracey. Now there was no one to come between Clyde and his boyfriend, Shane.
Sabrina’s grandmother supported Sabrina when Sabrina “Lost her Virtue”.
Perhaps an explanation is called for. If there was one thing seventeen year old Sabrina shared with her boyfriend it was love of cats. Billy was nineteen and worked as a mechanic apprentice, but every day after work, I mean every day, he would meet up with Sabrina and apparently they would feed their cats and talk about cats. For hours.
Sabrina had only two cats, but Billy had four. He lived “out the back” of his parents’ house, so Sabrina transferred her two cats to Billy’s place. That meant company for the cats during the day, and then after work they could feed both lots of cats together. Every day Sabrina and Billy would spend several hours “out the back” in Billy’s quarters feeding and talking cats. Well – maybe they occasionally talked about other things, but they were most passionate about cats. At least, cats were their excuse.
One day, the inevitable happened. Sabrina came home (she lived with her grandmother) in a ripe old state. What a mess she was in. Tears and more tears. She could hardly speak she was so upset. But eventually she managed to tell grandmother that she had lost her Virtue.
Don’t worry, said Grandmother kindly. We shall get you another cat to replace Virtue.
Of course a lot of people don’t know how to part their hair in the right place. There are a lot of people who simply part their hair where they feel like it, but the head has a natural part. If you part your hair in the natural place, you look a lot younger.
My husband is bald, so he wouldn’t know where to part his hair. We came out from Cambodia over thirty years ago. I said to my husband then, that we have absolutely no relatives here, not even a solitary old auntie, so we’d better start making babies so that we have some relatives. So that’s what we did. We made three babies, and then I got a job in Johnsonville while the smallest was still small.
I’m not a grandmother yet, but the oldest boy is twenty-eight now. He had a girlfriend but when he broke up with her it broke his heart and now he’ll have nothing to do with girls. My husband and I, ours was an arranged marriage. I said to my son, there’s lots of relatives overseas who will find a pretty Cambodian girl for you to marry. Then you can start making babies. But he’s more into not doing that. He says he’ll find someone when he’s ready. But he’s not going to get back his girlfriend because she already married somebody else. I said you go online and find a girl on Twitter or something, but he won’t do that.
After Johnsonville I got another job in Wellington, but it didn’t pay as well, and I had to travel there and back. There was no time for the garden. I like my garden very much. So I said to the boss that I would work only on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so that’s what I do.
Anyway, that’s your haircut finished. Just pay as you leave.