Across the notice board, the
words in bold letters said, “Delayed,” and a grumble of
complaints echoed throughout the airport.
Mrs. Marvin shook her head;
she looked at her watch and sighed. With her back arched she
dragged her large suitcase across the floor and tapped a young
man, wearing a uniform, on his shoulder. “Excuse me.”
“Yes, Ma’am,” he
replied curtly, turning around to face her.
“Why is my plane late? I’ve
been waiting for hours.” Her glasses slid down her thin nose.
“Which one is that?”
“The only one that is
cancelled.” Her wrinkly finger pointed up to the notice board.
She sucked her lips in over her gums.
“I’m not certain, Ma’am.”
He looked over at the board shrugging his shoulders.
“You do work here?” She
looked him up and down.
“Yes, Ma’am.” He
nodded his head several times.
“Then why don’t you
“That’s not part of my
“And why not?”
“Err...” He looked at
the elderly woman, confused.
“This is ridiculous. I
have a routine you know, if I don’t stick to my routine it’ll
upset my digestive system. Then I’ll be ill. I may vomit too.
Would you like that?”
“No Ma’am. I’m sorry,
I can’t help you, but I could take you to someone who could.”
“Why didn’t you say so
in the first place? I don’t have time for this,” she said
rolling her eyes.
“I’m sorry Ma’am. This
way.” He pointed towards a corridor. “Let me take that for
you, it looks heavy.”
“Yes, it is. Be careful
with it, it’s George’s best suitcase.”
“Yes, Ma’am.” As he
bent over and held onto the straps, he wrinkled his nose from the
foul stench coming from the suitcase. They zigzagged through the
crowd up the corridor.
Mrs. Marvin followed him
slowly; every now and then, she paused to catch her breath.
“This weighs a ton, I don’t
know how you’ve managed to drag it this far.”
“What’s your name?”
Mrs. Marvin asked.
“Michael, Ma’am,” he
“Well, Michael, to be
exact you could say around ten, no, twelve stone, then on top of
that maybe a few pounds.”
Michael looked down at the
suitcase anxiously, then they continued walking up the corridor.
“It’s hot here.” She
wafted her hand over her face. “Why’s it got to be so hot in
here? There’s no air conditioning.”
“The airport has top of
the range air-conditioning.”
“Well it’s not working.
You’ll have to report that to whoever. It’s not right making
us ill with this heat.”
They approached three doors
in a row. “Just in here, take a seat,” he said, opening the
Mrs. Marvin poked her
glasses back up her nose. “Why have you brought me to a small
room? I bet the air-conditioning isn’t working in there either.”
“I thought it would be
easier if I brought someone to you, rather than have you walk to
the other side.”
“Are you saying I’m not
capable of walking?” she snapped with one hand on her hip.
“No.” His face turned a
shade of red.
“You better not. I may
look old, but I still have it in me. I’ve managed to pull that
suitcase without any problems and you, you complained about it
being heavy, not me.”
“Yes, Ma’am. I’m
sorry. If you’d prefer, I don’t mind showing you the way.”
“No, I’m going to stay
here and wait, you’ve put me in a huff now.” She stamped her
feet as she walked into the room.
“I’m sorry, Ma’am.”
He followed her in and dragged the smelly suitcase in.