I was sat in a class at the CUJAE (Creative University for Just About Everything), and we were taking it in turns to tell each other an interesting real life story we encountered. When it came to my turn, I told them about some rather uninteresting shopping experience where a woman stole a top from Marks and Spencer (from my dreams you guys probably think I’m obsessed with shopping… I swear I’m not!)
Then a large woman at the back stood up and told her tale. And her story, like her size, dwarfed mine:
“My husband and I decided we needed a fresh start. He got a job at NASA, and we thought, ‘screw it, let’s go live on Mars.’
So we packed up our rocket, sold our house and bought a plot of land on the red planet. We were just about to set off when my brother decided he was coming with us.”
The woman pushed the tiny desk away from her so she could breathe a little easier.
“We left Earth behind. I thought ‘great! a brand new start with the man I love and my annoying little brother.’ But no. The idiots have to get talking, and then they see the moon out the window. They tell me they want to stop there, to see the sights. Already they’re ruining my trip.”
She smashed her fist on the desk, which wobbled dangerously.
“They were determined. So I parked the rocket on the moon, and they put on their space suits. My brother said he would ring me when my husband got bored of drifting round the moon. That was fine, we had plenty of satellites orbiting the Earth so we’d both have signal.
“So I set off on my own to Mars. I got a call from my brother a few days later, but I ignored it. I never went back for them.” She finished her story and sat down. “And I haven’t looked back since.”