Absolutely not!  However much I really can’t see her pulling a stunt like this, it has to be a wind up. A pretty nasty joke, but a prank nonetheless. Lidia unfriended me once on Facebook because I hadn’t spoken with her in a while, and I had to track her down and convince her that I was just too busy. She did things like that. The announcement of her death surely meant that she had just taken the hump with everyone at the same time. She certainly can’t be dead. Absolutely not! Lidia is too young to be dead. She’s far too alive to be dead, and she’s far too Lidia to be dead. I’ll have to track her down again and get her to take that post off her timeline.

At three this afternoon this was my reaction. It was the only reaction I was capable of, and to be honest I don’t think that I have moved much beyond it at the moment. As I stared dumbfounded at the laptop screen messages started beeping in on the phone. Online notifications were appearing. Others had read it. Sitting at the desk gaping into cyberspace it was clear that the unhappy news was ricocheting around her networks of friends. It began to register on my Twitter feed. People I knew were treating this as shocking but true. It was shocking. It was also true. I knew it was true, but I really didn’t want to accept it.


Fifty isn’t old. She always insisted that she wasn’t our mother, but sometimes she sort of was. She has always been great to have on side, and has been one of those folk you had to work at to keep sweet. She never put up with half-hearted attempts at friendship. It seemed at times that she was hard work, but in a good way. She never talked down to the people around her. Condescension wasn’t her thing. She wanted everyone to be at her level, which was grand until she got her doctorate.


Ouch! The news hasn’t sunk in and it hurts already. Lidia wasn’t even sick. She had a vomiting bug and was discharged from the hospital. That’s not sick for god’s sake. Only the other day we were chatting. She sent me a text asking me to babysit her parrot Joshua, but by the time I got the message she had already gotten him to the vet’s for minding. I could have been landed with a twenty-five year old angry bird. Poor Josh. Poor Lidia! I don’t want any of this to be happening. I’m beginning to fear that it might really be true.

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