by Jackie Beadle
I had a new friend, his name was Albert ... well I called him Albert for he
was a spider who lived in my bathroom on the basin behind the cold tap.
I liked him because he always came out to greet me when I cleaned my
teeth. I used to talk to Albert and he seemed to respond or so I thought
he did, but sadly one day he came too close for his safety and he was
washed away when I was cleaning my teeth. I managed to save him from
going down the plug hole but he drowned though I did my best to save
him. I tried to dry Albert on a flannel on the window sill but failed.
This made me really sad because I had killed my friend. Children have
imaginery friends and I can really understand why now. You may think
I'm simple minded but during the period of lockdown one had to rely on
these little pleasures and to celebrate the humdrum in order to keep
safe and preserve one's sanity.
There were other things of course to do than to fantasise about a spider
but I missed my family and friends for I am a people person. I used to
go through my address book, picking out those on my Christmas card list
and give them a call, often to their surprise and hopefully delight. The Re
calls would go on for hours; it didn't matter what one said but it was
important to communicate. I tried to do all the jobs I've been meaning
to do for a very long time but somehow still managed not to do them, so
I've concluded that putting a backlog of tasks in a mental filing tray
gives us a sense of comfort and reassurance. I have also come to the
conclusion that we do what we want to do in this life and believe what
we want to believe, what is convenient and suits our purpose.
Lockdown has given us all an opportunity to see things more clearly, to
ponder, to ruminate, to value what we already have and not to eagerly
grasp for more. If you were a refugee, tossed about on the open sea in a
small dingy, dry land, a good meal and a warm bed would be your only
(re-print of her prize-winning writing in the THACS Writing Competition September 2020)
© Copyright Jackie Beadle - THACS Writers Online 2020