...the best person ever.
You know, I often consider myself a pretty unlucky person. Mainly because I am. For example, my headphones just broke. There was that time I broke a whole bunch of bones. The multiple car crashes. The time a pigeon flew into my face. However, in spite of all this, some things have made up for it. I mean, the best person in the world has been a big part of my life. And statistically, that's pretty unlikely. So let's reminisce.
Her name was G. Or it was Mabel, but she didn't like that much, and I can't really blame her. I'm glad it's not my name. I probably don't deserve it anyway. And now, golly, I'm quite stumped for words. Where do you begin describing 91 years of cool? 91 years is a really long time. Being only 26, I can't quite get my head around that many years. How can I? It's not part of my frame of reference. But G is, and we were pretty tight, so let's go with some memories.
She had the mouth of a sailor. She liked the cricket. She made the best plum pudding, and she took great care of you when you were sick. She was gentle and kind and she knew how to fish, and she made the most wonderful vegetable soup. She had a nickname for everyone (wonder where I get it from?) and was good with animals, had a rhyme to remember everything, and the only time she ever said anything bad about someone, it was about Shane Warne. And he pretty much deserved it.
One day she and I were having lunch and she was telling me about this family she used to spend the holidays with when she was young. They had a big house by the bay, but then the husband lost it all to gambling. G told me she would've shot him if she could afford the gun. I said "Really? I would've chopped off his doodle" to which she replied "Yeah, then he couldn't pee or fuck!"
I don't think I've ever laughed quite so loud.
But I think the best one is far more innocent. One of her biggest fears was outliving her siblings. There was G, Cliff, Bob and Margaret, and Cliff and Bob shuffled off in their own time. Aunty Margaret was and still is a bit crotchety (what a wonderful word) and a couple of years ago moved back to Adelaide in ill-health to live with her daughter Cathy. My mum and dad and I took G to see her one last time and were worried how the old bat would take it. I've never had a sister but can imagine that it's much like having a brother, only better, and I have two of those. So it would be pretty upsetting saying goodbye for the last time. Tub and Frau (mum and dad) and I were bracing ourselves for a tear or two as we walked G in to see Margaret, who was dressed in her finest hospital gown. But then it took 15 minutes of conversation for G to realise she was talking to her sister! Ha! It was only when Margaret said something particularly grumpy that G said "Oh now I know who you are!" and we all laughed and breathed a sigh of relief that it wasn't the heartbreaking farewell we thought it would be. Maybe you had to be there, but it was pretty good.
G taught me to tie my shoelaces. She used to plait my hair. She gave the best hugs. She told a good joke. And I'm gonna miss her forever. She really was the best person ever.
Mabel Ruth Pelquest: 1 May 1921 - 7 Feb 2013
Simply the best.