Serena's mother died 5 years previous and made Serena promise to take care of Daddy Dearest. What a horrible thing to do to a girl! On the subject of deathbed promises...I've never really been in a position to make any and I hope I am not so lost to all reason when it is time to meet my eternal reward that I would make a binding promise that would shackle my only daughter for the rest of her life. Do any of you have fun deathbed stories?
When her father has a serious stroke and later when he dies, her brothers offer her no help...she's expected to do everything and be grateful for the chance to keep busy. We have a saying in the Hanna family: Brothers are useless. Which sounds a little harsh. Surely, Betty Keira, they aren't really useless? Well, no. Not entirely useless. (Compared to sisters, though...) Rather, too often they are only as useful as their wives allow them to be. (Which sometimes is very useful but, if you'll allow me a metaphor, if brothers are a water hose, the wife is the spigot.)
Before the family home is handed over to the charity, Henry goes through the house and takes the best stuff, Matthew and his wife get second best and Serena takes only what will fit in a suitcase--and that stuff has to be packed around her sensible skirts and cardigans. You couldn't even manage to stuff a paper-mache work table or Coleport glasses in the crannies of that. (But you probably might manage a hideously beaded Victorian 'Wedded Bliss' pillow...)
|Sure she was addicted to meth...but the floors had never shined so bright before...|
She gets a job as a shelf filler at a supermarket (Francesca from The Fortunes of Francesca gets a seasonal job doing the same). I am a very good manual laborer--attacking my repetitive household tasks with the enthusiasm and ferocity of a jungle cat (take that, shower scum!)--but it's not for everyone. I think it requires a rich imaginative life and an inability to be fussed over dishpan hands.