Being Careful

I reluctantly answered the phone. Kay was my best friend, but I knew what she would say. “Hi.”

“Thank goodness you are safe.” Kay sighed. “One day you will look before you leap. There could have been anything waiting for you.”

“I’m fine.” I said. “And I did a lot of research.”

Kay snorted. “Looking on Google maps isn’t research.”

“It’s just as I expected.” I leaned back against a packing case. “The rented house needs a major clean, the library I’m supposed to sort out is a mess and my employer is sort of a sweetie but hasn’t a clue.”

Kay laughed. “Trust you to fall on your feet. How you have got through life in one piece is a mystery. You just charge at things without ever considering what might go wrong and somehow find things working out.”

“There are some amazing books in the library.” I said. “There’s some volumes that are so rare and antique that I don’t think I’ve ever seen in a catalogue. I’m going to be busy for a while, and the pay is great.”

“I’m really pleased for you.” Kay said. “Anyway, the reason I called was your housewarming present. I know it’s only rental, but it’s a new home. If you look in your blue case, tucked into the top corner, you’ll find a package. Go and get it. And when you find it, please be sensible!”

I found the blue case on the bottom of the pile, of course, and found the small packet Kay had tucked there for a surprise. Wrapped in blue paper, with a long list of safety precautions, was a candle with my favourite scent. I set it on a sturdy packing case, lit it with the matches Kay had included, and sat back. The uncertainty and homesickness slipped away and I spent a few moments appreciating Kay’s kindness before getting on with the cleaning – taking due precautions around the lit candle, of course.

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