Short and Sharp

Yes, a story. Probably fiction, although maybe not for someone.


Two weeks to go, and then it’d be the start of a new year. A new life, new prospects. And a new job in a new town.

With nothing to stand in her way, Roz packed what she wanted to keep, tossed what was tatt, and donated what was left. Getting away from this life of always working, whether in the office or at home, was about to end. She was going to the coast, to a job with dogs in a day-care centre, and living free of the influence of her family’s strictures and oversight.

In the car went everything that was different. The new style of clothing that suited the beach, new towels and sheets, new attitude. It filled the little hatchback to the max, including the front seat with her laptop and notebook.

Two days driving from Kalgoorlie to Coffs Harbour, two days of stiffness worked through every muscle and sinew of her body, and it was worth every second.

Temporary accommodation was arranged, and she checked out the address online, but first she wanted to see the place she’d be working.

The address was one street back from the beach, the business website bright and cheery. She followed the directions and pulled up at the corner. Check the number. Somewhere in the middle. She counted off the buildings as she crawled slowly past. Pulled up in front of the big glass windows with graffiti of dogs and people smiling and playing. A good sign.

She got out of the car and walked over, peered through the window.

A flat, open space, an empty interior. Dust. Dangling fluoro’s. Through the hanging webs and insulation she saw a light at the back. She cupped both hands around her eyes to get a better look.

Not light. An open door, hinges broken.


19 thoughts on “Short and Sharp

      • Tough one – because she hasn’t been taught how SHE should handle her discomfort and problems. I hope you’re right – but not having funds, a job, and a place you can afford to stay at and take care of yourself at, is going to be daunting. She could first try the authorities, governmental and private, in the town where the job didn’t materialize. It also depends on how much money she managed to leave home with… Start by figuring out where you are and what your resources are, move on from there.

        I thought back to all MY new starts – but I never jumped without knowing where I would land, so I’m not a good example. I remember one move, to grad school, when I found a place to live – and then had to backtrack, tell the landlord I couldn’t afford it, and present a candidate who could – and then find a much less expensive (and closer) place. Scary.

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      • My life experiences have often been similar to the story – ending up somewhere with nothing and having to find a way to survive. It helped with the fosters, too, as there were many experiences to share to show options that weren’t obvious at first glance.
        When in a similar position, I drove to a car sales yard and walked in, asked if they had a job going, did a quick interview and started work the next day. The receptionist gave me the number of a place to stay – and rang them to say I had a job.
        Ash Wednesday bushfires left me with nothing except two cars (which the fosters filled with their stuff before leaving the property), so maybe I’m in the habit, or need to learn some sort of lesson about life (yes, we had a plan for bushfires, but I was at work in the city, and the kids followed the plan A – which wasn’t feasible, then plan B, then plan C – and it took me three days to find them again!).

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      • They did well, followed the plan, adapted when things didn’t work out, and stayed together, caring for each other and the animals. They did well, it was me freaking out that they were lost in the fire. The relief that comes from the moment of finding them alive, well, and preparing for what came next is a feeling indescribable in any sense. Or all senses.

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