Burgess must have been one of the most obnoxious people on the planet. It’s hard to say exactly why. It was little things he did that drove people crazy. For example, when dining at a restaurant he would blow his nose on his napkin as if it was a tissue or a handkerchief. He would poke his finger in his ear and scratch as if it was itching and wipe his hand on his pullover. He would… Ok. Ok. You get the point.
Why he got on so well with Averil beggared belief. Averil was so prim and proper. When dining at a fancy restaurant she would delicately dab her lips with her napkin, and say “Pardon” even if the belch had been inaudible. Everyone was shocked when Burgess and Averil announced their engagement. A marriage simply would not work.
The marriage was just over a month ago. And then off they went on their honeymoon to some isolated spot somewhere in the region of Vanuatu. They both liked scuba diving and there was a resort that specialized in it. That was probably why they chose to honeymoon there. People back home joked that Vanuatu could well be the place that would see this clearly unsuitable couple fly home on separate flights.
They did fly home separated but on the same flight, each in their own casket. The tsunami had hit without warning.
It was an exciting time for Jenny and her sister, Norma. After years of chatting about it, they were at last going on their first overseas trip. So much to do! So much to think of and plan! They were going to Samoa; to a beach resort. What would they need to bring to wear? How much spending money do they take? Do they have Mastercard? What does one do when one steps off the plane? How do you go through Customs? How do you say Hello in Samoan? Talofa!
Their new, pristine, unstamped passports had arrived. The tickets were booked. The departure day drew near.
And… off they went!
Talofa! They were like children on Christmas morning!
Through Customs! Talofa to you, too. Then on to their little traditional cabin on the beach among the coconut palms. It was heaven!
Police in green reflective vests searched a ghastly landscape of mud-strewn streets, pulverized homes and bodies scattered in a swamp Wednesday as dazed survivors emerged from the muck and mire of an earthquake and tsunami that killed 119 in Samoa.
Military transports flew medical personnel, food, water and medicine to the islands of Samoa, which were devastated by the wall of water triggered by Tuesday morning’s undersea earthquake. One cargo plane brought in a temporary morgue and a body identification team — with officials expecting the death toll to rise as more areas are searched.