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They had to force her into the car. One of her brothers had even slapped her face. It still stung. She didn't even notice the rain against the window. (It would not be until later that she would notice the crushed stems in her hand). "Hold your head up Lahlia!" barked her mother. "Be proud for your family!". But as they pulled up outsuide the church, it was not pride that filled her heart, but fear. It took all of her strength not to turn and run, as they lead her inside to marry a man she had never met.
I wonder if my dad ever thinks about me. It's nice to imagine him sitting outside by the pool or driving along in his flash car, thinking about me. I wonder if he actually bought me a wedding present. Of course he did, he just hasn't posted it yet. I wonder if he knew I looked like a princess. He'll no doubt be ringing soon too because it's coming up to Christmas and he'll be excited to share his holiday plans. They just won't include me. I wonder if my dad ever thinks about how big his grandson is getting.
She'd been practising the walk. It had to be perfect. Too sexy, and there'd be a bitch-slapping from the others. Too frumpy, and she wouldn't be paying the rent this month. She loved the sound of her heels clicking in time to the flashing neons and the way the light caught her sequinned tights, outlining her fabulous legs, right up to the top of her thighs. Hey my darlin she called as she sashayed to the open window. She knew the job was hers. She'd seen him looking at her arse. He'd pay extra. It would be worth the bitch-slapping.
It sometimes takes me all of my might not to just pop around to one of these parents houses and make them answer some serious questions. Sure, the kid might be an angel at home but they can be an absolute arsehole in my classroom. And where did they learn this behaviour? At some point, someone other than me has to own this problem, so that when I ring to discuss it, I don't get the oh well, we were all kids once routine. Excuse me, but the kid I was, would never have told the teacher to get fucked.
I miss my friend Kim for so many reasons. She's the only one who understands The Cheese Game and she never tires of listening to me talking. I remember times when we've laughed so hard that I've almost wet my pants, and times when we cried because of how special we are to each other. I miss the skipping races (she should be an Olympic representative) and waking her up with a song. I miss the car adventures (where The Cheese Game all began) and I still laugh about the lady with the two dogs. I miss you my Kimmy.
Mr Berkley had always wanted a larger wife. His advertisement had been very specific. Looking for the ultimate lard-arse, must have at least 200 kilos of excess weight, etc. He could not contain his delight when Flora Delaney arrived at the cafÃƒÆ'Ã‚Â© on the back of a truck. He was even more delighted to see she was wearing the lacy red negligee that she had told him about over the phone. Her nipples (resting on her thighs) were erect in the chilly breeze. You must be Flora, he said and kissed her hand. She smelt of moisturiser and cream buns.
The trouble with Buster Mahoney was the size of his head. His poor mother had endured a 6 day labour trying to get him out and there had been endless problems ever since. For instance, buying hats. And getting through doorways. Even taking a girl to the movies was a nightmare. He'd lost count of the number of girls who mistook the innocence of sitting in the 'non-blocking-out-the-movie-for-others' back row, for the chance for a fondle in the dark. It was a sad day when Busters' neck finally gave out under the strain and broke in half, killing Buster instantly.
I wish I'd written down all of the stories my grandmother told me. Staying at her house on the weekends was the hi-light of my childhood. We'd lie in bed listening to the kids stories on the radio and then she'd tell me her own stories. There were the old tales of travelling over the Rimutaka Hill when it was a narrow gravel road and then having to reverse for quite a distance if you met someone coming the other way. I wish I could remember the rest of that story. I'd like to tell it to my own child.
I'm so excited. My friend has given me a CD set of all of the stories I used to listen to on the radio when I was a kid. It will be twenty-five years since I've heard some of them. I can still hear them word for word in my head. I can even hear the funny voices and the sound effects. I'm most looking forward to 'The Selfish Giant' and 'Sparky And The Talking Train'. I can't wait to sit and listen to them with my son. He'll think I'm silly, sitting there with nostalgic tears in my eyes.
Uncle Simon was sick of the being the non-favourite uncle. Every Christmas he would turn up at the family dinner, arms laden with the latest toys and expensive gifts. The kids would always jump for joy when they ripped off the paper and discovered the gems inside. The adults too, would grin from ear to ear when they opened his gifts. But every year, Uncle Sherman would buy them all bigger and better things. But not this year& for Simon had spent less on presents, and more on an assassin to 'get rid of his little problem' on Christmas Eve.
I tied to stop eating grass again today. I did quite well actually. It was a whole 37 minutes before I gave in to temptation (better than last week when I ended up munching on the lawn on the way out to work). I can see how it happened today though. It was a nightmare standing there at my son's soccer game, trying to keep up with score and yell encouragement in all the right places, when all I really wanted to do was get down on my hands and knees and eat until I was sick. Better luck tomorrow.
My wedding album will always be one of my most treasured possessions. Admittedly, I could have been 30 kilos lighter but the pure joy on my face that day is precious to see. I don' think I've ever looked so beautiful. There's me laughing, crying and sharing my heart. There's all of my friends and my darling brother who gave me away. And there's my gob-smackingly gorgeous husband (who thankfully turned up) and all of his family. And there's our precious son, the most beautiful boy in the world. Some people go their whole lives looking for what I've found.
They decided to whisper romantically to each other. He whispered that she grew more and more beautiful every day. She whispered that she would never forget the exact moment she had fallen in love with him. He whispered that he wanted to spend his entire life waking up beside her. She whispered that she melted every time he sang to her. He whispered that she was the only woman who could light a fire in his heart. She whispered that he'd better watch out for the big truck coming his way, but he didn't hear her and was killed instantly.
She had never imagined how quiet and peaceful it would be. And the smell - just like fresh flowers and chocolate and buttery popcorn all at the same time. It definitely felt like heaven. Her heart was pounding so hard and she could hardly contain her excitement. And then she saw him. He looked so beautiful, standing there smiling at her, his arms reaching out for her. Then she felt herself running, crying, laughing, flying into his arms. And he held her, and held her. All the missing years were forgotten as they turned and walked together towards the light.
Where the hell do my socks go? I always put both of them in the washing machine but only one ever comes out. That's it! I'm going in to investigate. Hmm, it's quite a struggle getting in the top and then having to curl myself tightly around inside the bowl. I'll have to put one of my legs up behind my head and stretch my arm under my hip and behind my back& Who is that strange little man coming toward me? What does it say on his t.shirt? 'Professional Sock Stealing Company'. Ahhh, so now I know. Mystery solved.
There's a pebble jar on my windowsill. The morning light catches the glass and distorts the pebbles inside so I can't tell how many there are. But I know exactly how many because I've put one in every day since you've been gone. I'm still writing to you even though you've stopped replying to my letters. Every day I walk up to the church and hold my breath as they read out the names of dead soldiers, then I come home and put another pebble in the jar. When you come home, we'll tip them out in the ocean together.
With each loving stroke, the canvas slowly began to fill with splashes of colour and sweeping lines. She knew that she must hurry to finish before the beginnings of summer came peeping in her window. She worked on through the night, sometimes forgetting to eat and sleep. At last, she stepped out onto the top of her mountain where the earth's sky was waiting. This was the exhilarating moment she always looked forward to& With tender breath, she blew across the surface of the canvas and set the heavens alight with a million butterflies, soaring, sweeping, caressing the summer sky.
Thankyou my friend for such a beautiful speech. It didn't matter that there were fifty people in the room — it felt like you were talking just to my heart. All the special memories, the moments that we created together: if I could do them all again, I'd only ever want to share them with you. The cupboard, the hedge, my plaits, sewing shirts, your pink double-belt, Raumati, catching the bus, Pebblebrook, canoeing down the Avon, the Morrie Minor, Easter camps& they're all there in my memory forever. There's a big ocean between us, but really, it's just a wee puddle.
Four days ago Colin trustingly told Meg his big secret. Unfortunately, Meg was not as pleasant as she lead people to believe. She told Colin's secret to her friend Shazza (a not-so-classy hairdresser), who told her 3 o'clock appointment, who told the taxi driver who later that night whispered the secret from behind to his somewhat younger boyfriend, who happened to tell his mother, who told her latest bonk who was a reporter. So it was not a good start to the morning when Roger flicked open the newspaper while he was waiting for the bus and saw the headline.
Green is my valley of youth Time will pass and more of the trees I've grown with, flown in the wind with and watched time with will be dying, leaving me. I've expected it though, for you have done so yourself. I was hanging there upside down, fearlessly from your highest branch. I clambered about you, engraving my name, thinking you'd live forever, that I'd stay young. That you would. But that was yesterday And I wonder if you know me anymore. Standing here, I call your name. Again, again. It's been a long time now since I touched you.
There's a pebble jar on my sill and each pebble is a day. In time I'll take them out and count them try to remember each one by name and maybe I'll invite you over here and we'll go through them together. Some of them are wet days, tear-crying days and others: some I can't even remember. But when I do it's usually sitting snuggled in a warm place thinking. And often when I'm listening to the wind I think I hear you laughing and I run outside to greet you. But there's never anyone on the path. Only pebbles.
With all of these dream-filled days I guess I really could be anyone I wanted. I could fly, soar out across the ocean: freedom and the wind my only companions. With the box of hopes I keep under my pillow, I guess I could be anywhere — in the softness of your touch, running my fingers through your slept-on hair, curled gently within the circle of your back, hearing your blue eyes laughing with mine. Our joy could create so much — the world lies waiting for us to explore. Come, warm your hands in the warmth of my love for you.
I lost my mother today. She let go of my hand in the supermarket and before I knew it, she'd just gone. I lost my mother today — in a world of grown-ups where all of the skirts look the same and all of the bustling feet sound exactly alike. I lost my mother today. I was laughing at one of her jokes and closed my eyes for just a second. Suddenly I was alone. I lost my mother today. She rolled away from me in her wheelchair. I think it was just her time to go. I've lost my mother.
Sam Hunt, I couldn't help wondering if you'd pop around for a cuppa. Excuse the mess I'd say. You came to my school once but you didn't know me. Maybe I was the same as everyone else then. I'll never forget wanting to wiggle my finger into the hole in the arm of your red jersey. To feel your realness. To say hello, my strange man of words, with hair like the wind. I try to imagine where you live: a screwed up paper and old-dog smells house. Imagination man, where do I begin to explain my life to you?
It's just that this is a real place. There's the drawer for my socks and there's a hook for my teacups. In the cupboard, the shopping I did for us. It's just that this is a warm place. You light the fire for me when I'm cold and after you've left, I make the bed we both slept in. Mmm& it's good to know you'll come home again. And it's just that this is the best life I've lived. It's a complete world you make safe with your love. My husband, I know I'm going to love only you forever.
There was only one thing that Gerry wanted for Christmas. He had thought long and hard about it. He'd written down all the things he was going to ask Santa for, and there was always the same thing at the top of the list. In the line, he watched the other children climb onto Santa's knee and whisper in his ear. Soon Gerry was clambering onto the big comfy knees; the fluffy beard tickling his chin. What would you like for Christmas this year? asked Santa. In a small voice Gerry whispered Just one thing: my daddy back from heaven.
Christmas is coming. It's such a family time - a time when we create special memories with the people who mean so much to us. We're looking forward to spending ten days at my brother's house. We'll do some jobs around the property, shop, eat loads of delicious food, sit in the sun and probably drink too much. It's going to be a wonderful time. Amidst the sunshine, there'll be the rainy moments as we remember those who aren't there with us, especially our beautiful mum and Arlene's lovely sister. I'm sure it's a stunning summers day where they are.
I guess they all expected that Muriel would eventually notice her dead husband sitting there in his usual chair in front of the television. She had noticed, but he'd been a lazy bastard for all of the forty three years they'd been married. To see him sitting there not moving for days on end was nothing new. It wasn't until Muriel had used a whole can of 'Smell Away' that she realised where the stench was coming from. Happily, she buried him (and the chair) in the back yard and spent the funeral money on a new leather lounge suite.
I'd love to take my mum out Christmas shopping. We'd go into all of those beautiful boutique-type places and try on ridiculously expensive dresses that we would have no intention of buying. We'd spend ages picking out sparkly tree decorations and choose special gifts for all of our friends and family. We'd stop somewhere for a lovely lunch and if there was time, we'd get our hair and nails done. I'd listen carefully to which jewellery she liked the best and sneak back later and get it for her. Yep, if my mum was here, that's exactly what I'd do.
I underestimated the power of the storm. I had to wrap myself tightly around a lamppost as the gale-force winds roared at my body, whipping up a frenzy of leaves and branches. The lightning was like a crystal white noise flashing across the sky and each deafening thunderclap shook houses from their foundations, spilling families out onto the street. It was terrifying, listening to their screams as the floodwater carried them away. Letting go of the post, I used one hand to protect myself from the hailstones, which were leaving dents in my cheeks. Man, my dad can really yell.
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