Running Late

It seemed strange to be moving on after all this time. This old house had been home for so long it felt like part of me, and I was part of it. But progress is progress, isn’t it? In a couple of weeks there would be nothing left but rubble and after that a car park for the new megamart going up in the field.

I don’t see that as progress myself. I had enjoyed my walks into the village to get the few bits I needed but I hadn’t done that for a long time. Old Joe, the old vicar had said I shouldn’t, and he made sure I was all right. Now Old Joe was helping me move. He said it is time we both moved on.

I think he’s probably right. The village isn’t the village any more. Cars speeding through the High Street at all hours of day and night. I’m not kidding you, it’s enough to scare us old timers half to death. Joe came through the door as I was looking about the old place. ‘There isn’t a lot left, Joe, it shouldn’t take long to pack.’

‘I wouldn’t bother if I was you, Ethel,’ he said as he sat on the windowsill, drawing on his pipe. ‘Everything we will need is already there. It’s very well organised.’

I had no reason to not trust Joe. He had been so wonderful since my dear Edmund had died. And that was so long ago. I must have said something aloud.

‘Yes, that was 20 years ago, Ethel,’ he said. ‘I think we better get going, dear.’

He took my hand and led me through the door. He didn’t open it, nor did I and it dawned on me we hadn’t been opening doors for a while now. ‘Joe?’

‘One of those fast cars, Ethel.’


He let go of my hand and I looked up into the eyes of Edmund. ‘Yes, it makes sense now!’

‘You always did take your time, Ethel.’


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