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Sally’s Story

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I promise she and I did not collaborate on the name of Melissa. 🙂

25th April 2021

*Agent* * whole* *deputy* *theatre*  *nuance*  *damn*

MELISSA by Sally Stackhouse

Sometimes her whole day was given over to answering the telephone, emails, let alone the admin involved in running and office that was so busy with just her as the sole occupant.  Whose bright idea was it to start running a bureau that caters for agents in the entertainment industry?

Oh, yes, it was hers.  Melissa was quickly coming round to the idea to hire an assistant, an office girl Friday, who would take on the responsibility of fielding all those damn calls.  It was non-stop.  No sooner had she replaced the receiver and turned to her computer than the incessant ringing continued.

Melissa answered the phone, her stomach clenched as she heard the strident tones of the agent for the local theatre just off the High Street.  The complaints kept coming, when was ‘this’ going to ready? When was ‘that’ going to happen?  Did she know how busy she was?

Drucilla’s tirade went on for 15 minutes. Melissa was having a hard time getting a word in edgeways.   When she drew a breath, Melissa was able to reassure her client that everything was going as planned.

Breathing deeply, she reached into her office drawer, Melissa comforted herself by unwrapping a toffee bonbon, allowing the rich texture and taste to suffuse her mouth.  It was almost as good as a meditation in the limited time chewing a toffee allowed.

Back to the grindstone, eventually all emails were dealt with, filing was done, notes were checked and then Melissa looked at the clock.  Even though her computer showed the time in the corner of her computer she always looked at the ‘proper’ clock on the wall.  Call her old-fashioned but it worked for her. 

Ten minutes to five o’clock, she shut down the emails, saved all her documents to the spare hard drive and, just to be on the safe side, also to a flash drive which she placed inside her handbag.  She was just locking the office door when the phone began to ring, dithering on the threshold, debating internally whether to just close the door and get on home or to be diligent and responsible and dutiful and answer the blessed thing. 

Rebellion won out in this particular instance.  Melissa set the burglar alarm, locked the office and started down the flight of steps to the outdoors.  The beginning of evening sunlight threw shafts of sunbeams on the pavement.  Inhaling the freshness, along with the petrol and diesel fumes of a busy city centre, she positioned her face mask in place and made her journey home. 

Tomorrow it would all start again but tonight was hers and hers alone.  As she walked, she diverted in to the park.  Sitting on a park bench she gazed around, taking in the splendour of the day with all the nuances it afforded, the subtle colour changes in the freshly mown grass.  The shades of yellow on the tulips in the beds.  The sky began to change colour, the various shades of blue morphing in to one another as the day slowly drew to an end. 

Dusk fell as Melissa entered her own home where she was greeted by the lovely aromas of a beef stew which had been slow cooking all day.  The best bit was being greeted with a hug and a kiss from her husband.  All in all, although day had been hectic, it was now turning in to a lovely evening. 

She had everything to be grateful for and, boy, was she thankful to have such peace and tranquillity in the evening.

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