To say she wasn’t pleased was an understatement of enormous proportions ~ the Titanic of understatements you might say.
The house was wrecked, debris and rubble scattered everywhere, dust creating a grey blanket over her personal possessions. Gently she picked up a picture frame that she knew to be silver and wiped the glass tenderly on her sleeve ~ the picture emerged, shadowy and faint from the dust, and she saw her much younger self smiling broadly and clutching Vic’s arm as they walked out of church. She stopped and smiled, remembering Vic and the way he would say “Come on Gel, up and at ‘em” when she would have been prepared to admit defeat. “Come on Gel” she whispered to herself, “You can do this, just think what Vic would see if he saw the house in this state”.
Slowly she put on her housecoat, faded now, the brightly coloured sprigs of heather now a vague spray of pale blue, but as usual it was spotlessly clean and starched to within an inch of its life. Slowly she made her way into the kitchen to collect her cleaning equipment “This calls for the rubber gloves I think” she smiled, and set to, the radio softly accompanying her in her work.
Hours later she stopped and, with her hands in the small of her back, she straightened up and looked around. Fair enough, it was still far from perfect, but the rubble had gone and the dust has been viciously chased away. Time for a pot of tea and a sit down.
As usual her thoughts turned to Vic, she allowed herself to remember the good times, when Vic would come home with a wedge of cash and a sharp new suit. He would pick her up and whirl her round “Come on Glenda, get your glad rags on and we’ll go dancing”. He was a case, her Vic, and she closed her eyes to how he made his money, choosing to enjoy the fruits of his labours and the lifestyle it allowed.
That last day, just before he got banged up for a long stretch, he had gathered her in his arms and whispered “Come on Gel, it’ll be OK, Honest Injun”. “Honest Injun” was another of his favourite phrases.. normally signifying he was either lying or in trouble.
How ironic, she thought, that now her Honest Injun was away on the Island for 15 years she had fallen prey to the Cowboy Builders from hell…