"And are the ladies looking for hats for any special occasion," simpered the very eager and very British young salesclerk. Sales on the High Street are very slow and the sight of Peg, Anna and Gillian with Jim and I in tow had her hopes up for big sales.
"Well actually its for a funeral" I replied trying not to burst into laughter as Gillian modeled a flippy feathery number.
Poor girl - she was totally nonplussed but then she didn't know Deb. She couldn't imagine the half-smile and those eyes crinkling that we all could see as hats were tried on and comments made. She couldn't understand that what we were doing reached back to salacious lunch hour conversations, raucous restaurant banter, deep late night talks about everything that touched our lives or quiet chats on a London bound train where prognosis were revealed and talked about. But hopefully she could see the incredible love and heartbreak that was in our laughter. Deb wanted the ladies to wear hats at her funeral and damn it our ladies were going to wear hats. And if those hats were a bit flippy, a bit feathery, so much the better.
Slightly saucy, maybe even a bit silly our Deb would have loved them. And knowing she had taken us shopping one more time would have pleased her no end.
15 aprile - San Telmo