Angie

Angie rises each morning with the sun.  She’s always been an early bird.  She stretches and yawns, devours a healthy breakfast, and takes the brief walk to join her colleagues at work for the day.  She’s lucky her commute is such an easy one.

She sees her boss, Brian, at the start of her shift in his usual scruffy attire.  Angie’s not convinced that he showers every morning.  He smells and often has dirt under his nails.  And it wouldn’t kill him to clean his shoes every once in a while.  She’s worked for him her entire life but they share no affection.  She’s indifferent to him, and he to her.

The daily work routine kicks in.  Everything Angie does is familiar and executed without thought.

She’s not bored.  Or maybe she is.  She doesn’t know.  This is her life as she’s let it play out.

She has no hobbies, she’s formed no real friendships.  She’s had children but they’ve grown up and now have lives of their own.  She met the father of her children at work in her young days, and he still works here.  The passion between them is long gone, and their relationship is now a perfunctory one.  Did she love him at the start?  She’s not sure, and it no longer matters.

Angie works all day, slowly, methodically.  Brian’s been in the open plan area for much of the day, busying himself with things Angie doesn’t care to think about.

The morning passes and she feels bloated from constant grazing.  She’s never been slim, but she’s not fat either.  She’s average when compared to the other women at work.  She likes that she fits in.  Chloe, two years younger than Angie, won a local beauty pageant when they were barely adults and has been slightly ostracised by the other women ever since.  Rhonda on the other hand ballooned after her last child and is grossly obese.  The women are polite to her, but they talk behind her back.  Angie knows it’s best to be middle-of-the-road.

It’s a warm day and in the afternoon Angie goes for a stroll.  The blazing sun leads her to rest under the shade of a tree.  Her full stomach has made her drowsy and she sits down for a bit, but the flies become too annoying so she heads back to work.  There aren’t many hours left till her shift is finished anyway.

The clock ticks on.  She’s looking forward to the end of the day as her stomach’s a little upset and she’s been to the toilet far too many times.  Ugh.  Why does  irritable bowel syndrome have to be part of her life?!

The brilliant pink sunset signals the day’s reaching an end.  She heads home, and after a light dinner, she settles down for sleep.  The day is over.  The sun has set and tomorrow there will be another.  Each day the same as the one before.

The sun rises the next morning.  Angela stretches, yawns, and looks out her bedroom window.  Angie’s resting under the tree near the milking shed that Brian’s hosing down, following the morning milking.

Angela remembers the day she named Angie (the only cow in the herd to have a name).  Angela had watched Angie for months, following the same routine, day in, day out.  That cow’s life was as inspiring as her own.   That cow was Angie.

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