An old white woman sits at a table. Her clothes are faded, a once-good suit. Exhausted, frail. Her hair is wispy: Grandmother.
A younger woman, a teenager, in a hoodie, jeans and sneakers, brings her a cup of tea, places it on the table: Granddaughter.
The Granddaughter walks to the corner and sits in a chair there. She stretches and looks off into the distance – like she is keeping watch. She rarely looks directly at the Grandmother.
Under all this, and for the rest of the scene, the sound of occasional beeps, the sound of the the tide.
I got it from the throat. I got it from the throat this time, hey. I barely took a look at the head. Big eyes, little fur.
Not much. And not plump.
Shame. That’s a shame.
She takes a sip of the tea, slowly.
Thank you. It’s very nice.
You’re very good at getting it just right.
This was your grandfather’s main complaint, you know, when we went anywhere – a restaurant or anything, a cafe, the temperature had to be piping hot. Or he’d send it back.
Oh right. Yeah.
Just always knew what he wanted. One of those people.
Had three eyes.
Pretty sure. It had three eyes.
No. I’m lying. Sorry.
It was blind. They’re all kind of blind now, I feel.. More and more. So it was easy. Didn’t even see me coming actually, hey.
But like the hearing’s actually heightened, so it’s still a bit of a challenge. But overall, easier to creep on.
That’s good. That’s very good. That’s very good.
Granddaughter starts to put on a pair of shoes that have been under her chair – thick boots, but faded, peeling. She’s doing the laces up with a studied energy.
Will you be away for long this time?
Nah, not too long. But Jaime’s found a new centre up north, bout a day off, big one too – don’t know how it’s taken so long to find actually. Got a Target and a food court and everything.
Yeah obviously. But should be a good party. There was a bouncy castle in the old photos – I mean, it’s definitely gone but who knows. Loved when we inflated the one last time.
She is nearly done lacing up her shoes.
Your mum loved that sort of thing too.
And the jumping, the bungee.
Yeah, I know.
She finishes doing the boots and gets up.
Loved the mountains.
Alright. Well I’m off now. Take care.
She walks over and kisses Grandmother on the head.
Loved being high up. In the mountains. She did.
Yeah. That’s nice. Okay, I’m just going to toss it in when I go outside ok.
Grandmother stares out. Alone in the room.
A gooey bundle of meat slides or is thrown from off stage – lands near the grandmother.
Loved the way altitude made her ears pop.
The grandmother picks up the meat with effort – it’s a bit heavy for her – and places it on the table. She’ll have to cook and brine it. She stares at it., and talks to it. Every sentence for the rest of the scene is un-rushed – each line has its weight, like she is remembering.
Loved the clouds. Loved the way they thicken and then disperse unexpectedly when you’re high up in the air. She did. She did.
She starts to separate the chunks.
Loved the ash clouds too – yellow and black and pink, didn’t matter. Just the sight of it everytime.
And the lack of them too.
She is exacting with the meat. She has done this many times before.
Loved talking late at night and waiting till sun broke.
Even when she should have been in bed.
Loved watching things in bed. Loved the documentaries.
How could one person be so curious?
She looks up but her hands keep working.
Loved eating basil but could never grow it herself.
Loved cooking but was a terrible. A terrible one.
Loved the album 1989, this I remember, and the year 1989, that I remember too. The year.
Loved the word mezzanine and loved the time we went to Disney World. I didn’t like the rides.
Loved birds. Cockatoos.
Loved ironing, creases into straight lines. The application of heat.
Loved heat. Loved sweating.
Loved going to work and having time to stop for a croissant. Loved being late and no one noticing. Loved being late and everyone noticing.
Loved how soft the blankets were. Loved discussing ducks and geese. Loved that time a geese bit me, bit her.
Loved the smell of a petrol station and late at night the signs glowing as we drove home.
Loved our garden gnomes.
Loved the statues in the park next to our house. How they were creepy sometimes but also angelic and also had been there forever, it felt like. It felt like that.
Loved pikachu. Loved coats. Loved rain. Loved my sister. Loved the wind. Loved handbags with alligator skin patterns.
She gets a bowl out from under the table and tosses the chunks in. She stands over the table, hands leaning on it to prop her up – this is taking all her strength.
Loved not knowing anything about sport but getting very angry. Very angry at the important games.
Loved the ocean and the stink of fish.
And loved ice-cream.
And loved teeth chattering after a cold drink. And loved the light. Loved him. Loved them.
She closes her eyes.
The show on tv. Not the funny one, the other one. You know, the other one?
It was good too.