LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF
BERNADETTE CYNTHIA HEALY
The drive is jolted, the car and I stop and start in line with the traffic. There really are too many people in London these days. I watch as the bus I could have caught saunters past only twenty minutes down the road. It's been a while since I've driven at rush hour, I always forget to leave an extra thirty minutes for traffic. There isn't much I can do now; I know Sonia and Clare will be disappointed with my late arrival whereas Polly will store the information as a retaliation for the next time she's late.
As I wait behind one of the many black Hackneys, not having moved for a good three minutes, I rummage around my handbag for my mobile phone. It sometimes takes me a while to remember that I can use these modern day conveniences unless it's right there in front of me. I blame the headache for slowing me down, but I don't want to worry Polly. I'll just let her know I'm stuck in traffic.
Eventually I grasp the phone in my hand and drop it into my lap. Of course the traffic now begins to thin and I have to move forward. I'm only a block or two from Polly's house, but considering it's already after 7am, I feel obliged to let her know I'm safe. I glance down at the phone, having pushed a button or two while changing gear at the same time. The screen flashes the luminous green, and I can see that I have 3 new messages.
I'm not coordinated enough to unlock the phone without both of my hands being free, so I have to casually ignore the interesting details sitting on my lap, waiting for the occasion to arise.
Traffic lights. Some early morning joggers have pressed the button and are now crossing the road with an irritating vigour. It gives me the perfect opportunity to exercise my dexterity and unlock the mobile phone.
I read again – 3 new messages. I click open. There is a message telling me that I have a missed call from Keith dated the previous evening. The second message tells me that I have a voice-mail from Keith, left that night. The third message, dated only ten minutes ago, is from Polly asking me if I'm on my way and if I'm alright.
I feel a little guilty for having left Keith in the dark after yesterday's impromptu investigation, I know I should have called him and let him in on the newly acquired information but... Well, if only I had an excuse. I don't so there is no point pretending to myself that it was a noble decision.
The joggers have disappeared around a corner, taking their sliver of time with them as the lights once again turn green. I haven't had a chance to reply to either Keith or Polly, and I realise that I may have to rely on my 'old age' and lack of coordination to get me out of the dog house. Polly at least will be easier to placate, especially as it only takes me few moments to parallel park outside the front of her house and knock on the front door, before entering. Keith, on the other hand, may take my unintentional ignore as a personal slight... I know I need to call him and keep him up to date, but family must come first.