Friday, 20 March 2009

More of Brenda

She is sipping her coffee with mild, bemused irritation; the whole point of coming out today was to buy a birthday present for his sister. They stopped only briefly for Adrian to finish the quote he needs to send out today. It was going to be just 15mins, half an hour max… and here we are one hour later, running out of time, and… there is no sign that he might finish soon.
The girls are getting impatient and keep asking when we will go home. And, guess who will be saddled with the task of buying that present…
She was not looking forward to this shopping trip anyway; Brenda is so difficult!
It’s not that she is ungrateful; she says all the right things when opening her gifts but weeks later you find out that the lovely bubble bath is still unopened in the bathroom, RHS membership is never activated, the amaryllis bulb withers sadly in the original box…..and so on. How do you cope with that?
The only thing that gets used are the M&S gift vouchers, and even that produces another pair of black trousers or a beige cardigan!!!
There is nothing exciting or frivolous about Brenda. Oh!! If only I could shake her out of her black and beige existence!!!
Come to think of it there is nothing frivolous about Adrian either. In fact it was his steady, placid character that attracted her to him in the first place. It felt so secure and peaceful compared to her own, tumultuous and unpredictable family life. But now, fifteen years later, she has moments when she feels it would make a welcome change if, now and then, he would surprise her with a ridiculous idea, extravagant gesture, a bit of silliness…anything to break the predictability and monotony of their relationship.
There is no point talking about it, or loosing your temper; he just does not understand what she means. At time she wonders if he even hears what she is saying. The best she can draw out of him is his gentle “yeah…yeah”.
They seem so much alike: Adrian and Brenda.
Adrian does not say much about their childhood or their parents and she often wonders what it might have been like growing up with an older sister like Brenda. He is so devoted to her and so protective. With all his mildness and malleability he will not allow a word of criticism of her behaviour. How come she inspires such loyalty???

Krystyna Lysakowska

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