“Welcome to another episode of Blue Hills“, I heard the disembodied voice say to my grandmother’s living room. The walnut legs of the chairs and the paisley motif, maroon and yellow carpet was what I could see from my childish vantage point, that and the thick ankles of my grandmother herself, tightly tucked into a smart pair of strapless shoes. I was playing with my Barbie and she was trying on some new clothes, a stylish pale pink jump suit and poker dot boob tube. Barbie had such lovely long legs and I thought to myself, looking at my own stumpy limbs, I wonder if I will ever have such shapely legs? Grandma shifted her feet and I noticed a varicose vein bulging in her, overweight, leg. Life in my world was very different to the perfect, plastic sheen that emanated from Barbie.
I heard my mother call out.
“Mum I think the hot water has gone.”
I wondered to myself where hot water goes, maybe on holiday, like Barbie, to Malibu or somewhere equally exotic?
“Are you sure Gwen? Do you think dear, it may have just run out, with all the extra showers happening?”
“No Mum it’s been stone cold for hours. You will need to call a hot water plumber, would you like me to do it?”
“Hang on Gwen, I am coming. Now, where did I put that hot water plumbing fella’s number?”
Barbie did not have to have hot water baths or showers, she was lucky like that. Barbie never smelt bad or got particularly dirty, she was always perfectly preened and presented. Barbie was like a smile that would never go away.
Grandma rifled through several kitchen drawers and eventually emerged with a business card held tightly in her fingers. She had her reading glasses on and they were connected to a pretty chain which went around her shoulders, so that she wouldn’t forget where she had put them; although sometimes she still forgot that they were hanging down her front.
“Here it is Gwen and they even take Bankcard!”
“Shall I call them, for you Mum?”
“No dear, I better do it, they will probably want to speak to the owner of the house.”