Shoalwater

Shoalwater

SHOALWATER, WA

APRIL 15, 2008

It was second week of the Spring school holiday. Pushing the overloaded trolley through the glass door of the busy supermarket I bumped into my school principal.

“ How you going?” She smiled and I apologized.

“ Don’t forget, there is a staff meeting on Monday.” I nodded and moved to the sun lit carpark.

“ Hey Mum, can we stop in Video Ezy I want to borrow this new game?” my twelve years old son walking in front of me, suddenly stopped.

“ Just find our car, please,” I waved at him angrily and caught the falling packet of chips in mid air.

“ My chips,” Mat smiled at me broadly and I passed it to him. He rushed upfront pointing to the faraway corner near the entry to the beach: “ The car is over there.”

“ Hi, Beata, I haven’t seen for ages, how you going?” One of the orderly teacher from my previous school crossed my path.

“ I am not bad, but you look great.” I exclaimed surprised looking at her cheerful suddenly much younger face.

“ I retired, you know, playing golf and no more worries about school, it’s not worth it, trust me,” she smiled at me: “ Too much stress and not enough pay, are you still hanging

there?”

“ Not too much choice,” I shrugged my shoulders: “ 20 or so years to retirement, 2 kids at Uni and this one…”

I suddenly heard the breaks’ shrieking noise and panicked: “ Mat!”

Mat jumped from the route of an approaching ute and continued to munch on his chips.

“ Hey, kiddo, watch out next time, will you,” a driver waved at him and passed quickly.

Mat waved him back and smiled at me with not a worry in the world.

I looked at my previous colleague in a frustration, but she just chuckled:

“ Been there, done that.”

Watching her to leave I mumbled to myself: “ Lucky you,” and  hurried towards my car.  I started to load the back of my car, when my mobile rang.

It stopped before I managed to find it. I passed the shopping bag to my son and checked my mobile in my car.

“ 7 unanswered messages, Mum, you’ve done it again,” Mat’s smiling face appeared in my open window.

there?”

“ Not too much choice,” I shrugged my shoulders: “ 20 or so years to retirement, 2 kids at Uni and this one…”

I suddenly heard the breaks’ shrieking noise and panicked: “ Mat!”

Mat jumped from the route of an approaching ute and continued to munch on his chips.

“ Hey, kiddo, watch out next time, will you,” a driver waved at him and passed quickly.

Mat waved him back and smiled at me with not a worry in the world.

I looked at my previous colleague in a frustration, but she just chuckled:

“ Been there, done that.”

Watching her to leave I mumbled to myself: “ Lucky you,” and  hurried towards my car.  I started to load the back of my car, when my mobile rang.

It stopped before I managed to find it. I passed the shopping bag to my son and checked my mobile in my car.

“ 7 unanswered messages, Mum, you’ve done it again,” Mat’s smiling face appeared in my open window.

“ Not too much choice,” I shrugged my shoulders: “ 20 or so years to retirement, 2 kids at Uni and this one…”

I suddenly heard the breaks’ shrieking noise and panicked: “ Mat!”

Mat jumped from the route of an approaching ute and continued to munch on his chips.

“ Hey, kiddo, watch out next time, will you,” a driver waved at him and passed quickly.

Mat waved him back and smiled at me with not a worry in the world.

I looked at my previous colleague in a frustration, but she just chuckled:

“ Been there, done that.”

Watching her to leave I mumbled to myself: “ Lucky you,” and  hurried towards my car.  I started to load the back of my car, when my mobile rang.

It stopped before I managed to find it. I passed the shopping bag to my son and checked my mobile in my car.

“ 7 unanswered messages, Mum, you’ve done it again,” Mat’s smiling face appeared in my open window.

“ Finish the packing, will you,” I waved at him and listened to voicemail.

I watched the afternoon sun combing gently endless waves of the Indian ocean through my front window when suddenly the strangely familiar voice from the other side of the world echoed in my ear:

” YOUR GRANDMOTHER HAS PASSED AWAY THIS MORNING.”

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