Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Tea with the Hedge Sisters - Chapter 2

"Woo hoooo!" Called Magnolia, sweeping into the house, arms laden with an eclectic bundle of items; a flower pot with what used to be a mum plant in it, a tray of her signature horrendous biscuits, two lengths of brightly colored fabric, a glass jar of crushed mica flakes and a cigarette case. "I brought prehhhhhzzzzents!"

Ivy, and well, truthfully anyone, could always hear Magnolia's arrival in whichever part of the house she happened to be. Though the house wasn't the size of Versailles, it wouldn't have mattered. Magnolia had a way of making her presence unmistakably known in any establishment--like a lorry through the brick wall of a busy cafe.

"Boo," shouted Magnolia over her shoulder through the still open door, "Please be sure to bring my purse when you come in."

Bougainvillea could be seen through the parlor window taking her time to admire and wander among the plants in the small front yard.

"For what on earth will she need her purse?" Bougainvillea said to the roses, then turned back toward the motorcar just as Hydrangea's stylish auto careened into the driveway.

Hydrangea's fender delicately brushed by Bougainvillea's hemline at an alarming speed before narrowly missing the birdbath and, less delicately, pounding the well-established oak tree with a sudden and quite solid thud.

"Boo! You won't believe what I found at the market this morning!" Hydrangea chattered obliviously as she stepped from the car, straightened her hat and reached into the back of the car to pull out and triumphantly present in her best imitation of a magazine model, a pair of shiny red riding boots.

Bougainvillea stood wide-eyed and motionless, two inches from the swath of tire tracks through the pansies, silent, but for the sound of her short, rapid breaths. One white-knuckled hand clutched her pearls in a death grip, and the other hand pressed at her femininity to prevent an untimely and embarrassing release.

"I know!" Hydrangea squealed," I was speechless too! I could barely take my eyes off them as I drove over. Be a dear and help me with these bags, won't you?"

By this time, Magnolia and Ivy had appeared at the front and kitchen doors, having heard the unfamiliar 'whump' of car on tree. "What on earth is going on?!" Cried Ivy, rushing to the scene. "Hyde, why are you parked in the yard? Where is your driver? And...MY PANSIES!"

"Oh I had to let him go." Hydrangea explained, pointedly ignoring the condition of the pansies "I suspected he was stealing. But who needs him anyway? I tell you, it's very liberating. I just enjoyed a wonderfully spontaneous trip through the market, and I drove all the way myself!

"Through the market?" Said Magnolia with a raised eyebrow, "That would explain the fresh fruit pulp on the grill."

"Well, they made those streets too narrow." Hydrangea dismissed defensively, pulling bag after bag out of the car. "And that fruit vendor practically robs you with those prices anyway. I did the village a service. Oh and, Ivy," she said, passing by, into the house and out of earshot, "you should think about moving that tree. It's was right in the way! I really think th . . . ."

"She . . . she . . ." Stuttered Bougainvillea, "she's driving? No. . . No, this can't happen. No, no, no, no, no." She shook her head, looking at her two sisters with a confused plea, "We have to DO something!" She then marched resolutely for the handle of a nearby garden hoe, raised it high over her head and made for Hydrangea's car.

Ivy and Magnolia immediately moved to intercept. Magnolia, taller, liberated the hoe while Ivy caught Bougainvillea by the shoulders. "It's all right, dear." Ivy crooned, "Yes, we'll take care of it." she continued in a soothing voice to a protesting Bougainvillea who allowed herself to be turned toward the kitchen entrance. "You're absolutely right. We'll talk about it over tea. Won't you help me in the kitchen?"

Ivy's calming words and voice did not extend to her eyes as she shot a frantic 'what-the-hell-are-we-going-to-do?' look over Bougainvillea's head at Magnolia. Magnolia shot back her own eyebrowed shrug, replaced the hoe and followed after Hydrangea.


Anonymous said...

Hello, dearest Chuck. My, I didn't realize how much I missed you. Hope all is well and that WV is treating you well. Hope to hear from you.

Dave J
Former Prez, GMCW

Just-Chuck said...

DAVE ! I found your site, but could find no way to contact you on it.

Send another note!