Wednesday, 23 November 2011
I was just about to sit down to a lovely cup of coffee and a biscuit and a chat with Joe after whizzing round the whole house with the polish and a duster, when the doorbell rang. It was the local florist, though this wasn't immediately apparent as he was struggling with an enormous bouquet of flowers.
"Hi," he said, once he had managed to arrange the flowers and his arms in such a way that his face was visible. "I'm really sorry to bother you,..."
"Oh, no bother if you're delivering such beautiful flowers!" I was about to help the flowers out of his arms and into mine when he turned them slightly away from me.
"Um, no, sorry, they're not for you. That's the point. They're for a Ms. Haggerty, couple of doors down? But there's no answer there, and I could see the lights on here... Could I leave them here for her?"
I was about to tell him what he could do with Ms Haggerty's flowers but he was quite a young chap and might have been shocked. I was also dimly aware of Joe hovering somewhere between me and the kitchen, waiting for the kettle to boil So I smiled my sweetest smile instead.
"No, that's no bother at all," I oozed at him, retrieving the flowers in what I believe to be a smooth move. (Eat your heart out, England rugby team.)
"Brilliant, thanks. I'll leave a card for her to come round." And he set off.
I was slightly disappointed that she would know that I had her flowers, but never mind. No good deed goes unpunished. I carried them through to the kitchen with Joe holding the door open fully for me so that the flowers weren't damaged, and then put the basket on the worktop.
"Look, there's a card fallen out," Joe said, bending to retrieve a small white object that had fluttered to the floor.
Now, I would never *open* an envelope addressed to someone else, but if the contents actually fall out, then it would be foolish not to read them. And boy, was I rewarded!
"Happy birthday, Fi - now you'll see that the big four-oh was nothing to worry about after all! All my love, D."
Innocuous? You may very well think so. I, however, was in the same class as her at school. So I know that she's known for a few years whether or not one should worry about being 40. D, it would seem, does not, despite sending all his (her?) love. Now where would D have got such a misconception from? I am actually looking forward to handing over the flowers later. And the card. Separately.