Last week, Donegal Woman ran a competition which gave one of our lucky readers a chance to win a copy of the fantastic ‘Their Mistletoe Baby’ by Karin Baine.
We are now delighted to reveal that our winner is Suzanne Murphy-Manganaro!
We hope you enjoy your Christmas read, congratulations Suzanne!
This week on Woman’s Words, Moville writer Sharon Thompson shares another tale exploring the life of local people.
Each Sunday this series will showcase works of literature written by local women for readers to enjoy.
This week, Arthur finds himself making a hasty decision that could lead to the introduction of a new love interest… could this unique method work?
Woman’s Words: Arthur discovers a new method for finding love
Arthur has his laptop balanced on a tray on his knees with one eye on the TV. Lucy the presenter on the TV is her usual giggly self.
They are discussing family Christmases and Arthur is thinking like Scrooge about Christmases past, present and future. Those times with Milly; the falling out with her about the tree erection, her spending too much money on the boys and whose family they would visit and when.
The times without Milly now; when a large gaping hole is left in everything he does, never mind the festive season. Arthur has never really ‘done Christmas’ and definitely didn’t do anything to make it happen. Milly did it all and with Milly gone – Arthur’s Christmas is kaput.
Someone might buy him a hideous Christmas sweater and maybe even socks and jocks, but he’ll have to buy presents too and the thought shocks him.
There’s a text number and an email address for the show. Arthur is typing before he can even think of what he is doing.
“Dear Lucy, I’ve been listening intently to your show. (That’s a lie Arthur thinks but taps on) I miss my wife Milly who died two years ago now. She died suddenly of a heart attack and crashed her little car, near her beloved Tescos. Christmas is just not the same without her.
“I am lonely and loved my wife dearly. But lately, I’ve tried to meet that special someone to share my new memories with. Could your show help me find that special person? I am 68, active and fun. I am going to write a blog about my life now as I’m doing a social media’s class. I wish to have someone to take on adventures with me, so I can make new memories and blog entries. Could you help me please?
“Best wishes, Arthur McNally.”
Arthur has attached a photo as quick as a flash and has pressed send, before he could have even said Jingle Bells.
‘What have I done?’ Arthur asks the kettle as his Inbox goes ping.
“Hello Arthur, Could you give, ‘Afternoon with Lucy’, your phone number please? We wish to discuss your email a little further please?’ – Head Researcher – Julie Finnegan.”
Shaking Arthur picks up the phone less than half an hour later.
‘Julie Finnegan, from Afternoon with Lucy here!’ her voice is very chirpy.
‘Your email caught our eye Arthur.’
‘Yes. We were saddened about your wife passing.’ Julie waits the appropriate two seconds for sympathy. ‘And we think that you deserve to find another special someone. We would like to help you. How do you feel about that?’
Her voice is off the excited scale and Arthur’s bowels do a lurch which makes him think he may have to leap over the laundry lying on the stairs and plant his behind on the loo.
‘Arthur are you still there?’
‘Yeah. I wrote that on the spur of the moment and I…’
‘Best way to be. Seize the day and all that!’ Julie sounds as if she’s on some drug or is hyper in general. ‘Exciting slot we’ve planned. See what you think. We find women for you go on a date with, cameras to follow you blab de bla and we have you all cosy for Christmas. What ya think? Talk ta me?’
‘By Christmas? That’s not long away and it might put me under a bit of pressure.’
‘Ya think?’ Julie sounds less enthusiastic.
‘How about we make it a thing that extends into the new year? Other ladies and gentlemen can apply too?’ Arthur suggests without totally knowing where he’s going with things. ‘You pick three men and three ladies. Each man takes a lady on different adventures. Then they decide if they like each other. You could film snippets from all of the dates. I could be one of the men.’
‘I like it. Maybe one from each province – how many provinces are there? Leinster…’
‘Four provinces.’ Arthur adds.
‘I’ll go look into this. You’ll be our leading man… Arthur. An attractive man like you will get things going for us. I can see the interest from the public will be huge. Looking forward to reading your blog too.’
Julie is gone off the phone and Arthur races to sit on the toilet bowl.
Visit Sharon Thompson’s website on sharontwriter.com
Sharon is the co-founder of #WritersWise a trending, writers’ tweet-chat (www.writerswise1.wordpress.com).
Find Sharon on Twitter at @sharontwriter