Adelaide’s youngest child was one of those three year olds who was constantly asking why. Endearing in small doses, it drove Adelaide and her husband, and her father and her parents-in-law around the bend. But if Adelaide’s little boy didn’t ask why, these are some of the things Adelaide would never have known:
- the man in the post office was a soldier who had indeed flown in the helicopters which occasionally circled Adelaide’s house. His combat fatigues were often mistaken for pyjamas and if you looked at the patterns carefully you would see love hearts and Mickey Mouse ears.
- the woman looking at the toothpaste in the supermarket cleans her teeth twice a day. Her toothbrush is red and does not have pictures of Winnie the Pooh. She does not use a cup to rinse the toothpaste from her mouth. She eats toast for breakfast and is intending to lose weight.
- the young man at the bottle shop has a silver thing in his tongue because he likes how it feels. You have to be an adult to get a silver thing in your tongue. You would have to go to hospital if you swallowed it.
- the man behind the counter at the newsagent eats sandwiches for lunch. He buys them from the bakery down the street. He has juice with his sandwich and coffee in the afternoons.
- the man in the cafe wearing white socks and brown leather sandals got the cuts on his legs from diving for abalone over the weekend. He gave the abalone to a friend who is sick. His friend did not go in an ambulance, but he has had x-rays. When the man goes to work he does autopsies.
At which point, Adelaide stepped in.