Author Sharon Thompson

This week on Woman’s Words, Moville writer Sharon Thompson gives us another instalment in the story of Arthur.

Arthur is 68-year-old gentleman who is looking for love and life again, following the death of his wife Milly. Over the past months, we’ve seen him struggle with loneliness and his devotion to his late wife.

Last week Arthur made a hasty decision and reached out the ‘Afternoon with Lucy’ TV show to share his troubles of finding love.

Now, he realises he has to deal with the sudden fame that comes with it:

Ordinary Arthur goes viral

The next morning, WordPress isn’t that difficult to figure out and Arthur uploads the first instalment of his blog and emails all his mates from the computer class and asks them to spread the word. It looks great. Really professional (in Arthur’s eyes) and it makes him happy to see his words reflect back in print from the screen. 
Arthur here. 
Who am I? I’m lonely as hell and summit has got to happen. I was married to a wonderful woman for years. I’ve realised she’s gone now and she ain’t coming back.
I’m retired. Bored. Oh and… Horny. 
I’m going to be on TV. Yes, desperate old me, is going on TV!
When I hear you ask? I’m going to go on blind date adventures with 3 women picked for me by the Afternoon with Lucy Team in the New Year and they will follow our adventures. Hopefully, I will find a companion by the end of it, but if not, we’ll all have a laugh. In the meantime I am going to be bloggin about my life and will fill you in on my Christmas and all that jazz . 
Idjit I hear you say! Yes I am. But I know you want to join me on my adventures now though, don’t ya?
Arthur x. 
He uploads a photo of himself and Milly to introduce the piece and a silly photo of himself making a face (at Jessica) on the end of the piece. Looking at his Stats after a half an hour he can see he has 50 views/hits already and a few comments. 
Stepping it out against the bitter winter winds all the way up to Milly’s grave Arthur feels a slight twinge of happiness and lets it come. 
‘It’s ok for me to be happy, Milly. I don’t miss you any less. It’s just being sad all the time, is so tiring pet.’ 
The walk home is a strain because of the rain. The radio he flicks on is mundane and although he’s warm thanks to the central heating, there’s little to do for the rest of the day. Arthur writes his Christmas cards and each signature looks lonely on its own. The smell of the Christmas tree, he got the usual fellow to deliver, fills the living room. The boxes of decorations look at him, willing him to feel festive before they get totally fed up too. 
In the twilight a hot whiskey is sweet as it reaches his tongue and the smooth liquid burns ever so slightly on the way down his throat. As night approaches, the electric blanket is cosy but it’s only ten o’clock and yet his book doesn’t interest him. The sooner the day ends, the sooner he can make a new positive start to his tomorrow. Arthur closes his eyes and whispers, ‘Goodnight Milly. Help me won’t you. Being with other women is bad enough but on the telly?’
It’s seven o’clock in the morning when Malcolm phones. Arthur’s in his stripped pjs in the kitchen staring at the garden and watching a robin flit about the grass and onto the path. The day is bright but frost sparkles on the tips of his favourite rose bush and on the spider’s web in the window’s corner.
‘Have you seen the newspapers?’ Malcolm sounds breathless. 
‘Nope,’ Arthur slurps his coffee waiting to hear about more visions on the golf course. 
‘I shall quote the headlines on most of the newspapers. ‘Ordinary Arthur, goes viral.’
Arthur spits coffee all over Milly’s beige kitchen curtains. ‘What?’ he hollers into the phone.
‘Apparently since your blog was posted yesterday lunchtime it’s trended on national twitter feeds in a matter of hours, the link to the show has had massive hits since yesterday afternoon and all the country’s mad for more of ordinary, old Arthur. Overnight?’
‘You’re kiddin’ me?’
‘Nope. You’re a big sensation ya bastard!’
Arthur flops onto the kitchen chair staring at the butterfly mug. ‘I can’t believe it.’
‘Apparently the nation needs the honesty of a middle-aged man to speak to the nation’s heart.’ I quote from the newspaper.’ Malcolm snorts. ‘This new honesty is needed to bring widowed men into the open with their loneliness, their fears and their grief.’ There’s a few more Malcolm snorts. ‘You there?’
‘The reporter adds ‘it’s about time that the likes of Arthur is praised for his bravery at telling us what it is to be coming 69, retired, widowed and alone. All Hail to Irish Arthur. It’s not all about the pub, the footie and the golf, it’s about a man being in touch with his feelings and articulating them so eloquently. She has rather a lot of exclamation marks for a journalist throughout the piece. Jasus. You sound like the new Messiah. What did the blog say?’
‘I don’t even remember. I musta said summit awful. Jesus. I want to vomit.’
‘So do I,’says Malcolm and then he is gone. 
Within seconds Arthur’s phone rings again. 
It’s the programme’s researcher Julie suggesting he ‘hide out’ over Christmas and read their leaflets on ways of dealing with avid media attention. She is gushing with praise for his one blog post.
Arthur’s mind is a whirl. His hands are shaking. As he reaches the hall to put the phone back in its cradle on the hall-stand, he looks at Milly’s photograph and bursts out laughing. ‘What are you doing to me, Milly?’
Her smile says, ‘Wait and see, Arthur. Wait and see.’

Visit Sharon Thompson’s website on

Sharon is the co-founder of #WritersWise a trending, writers’ tweet-chat (

Find Sharon on Twitter at @sharontwriter