I found a dead body when I was 19. I stared at it lying on its back in the bushes behind the wall of a big house. I was scared, my knees trembled and my heart was pounded. Moving a little closer, I stared at the grime covered face and matted hair. Was he dead?I should prod him really, I remember thinking at the time, just to be totally sure. With my finger out stretched, I stopped just short of his chest. I couldn’t. I was too scared. He wasn’t moving and didn’t appear to be breathing either. He was dead – maybe.
There was only one thing to do, even though my nerves told me to run – catch the bus to work and forget all about it. I could almost see the headlines:
She left him alone to die!
As he took his dying breath, she walked away.
Yes, there was only one thing a girl could do in a situation like that – get her mum.Mum had no hesitancy and prodded him in the chest. “Wake up! Are you all right?” To my surprise, the man opened his eyes and looked startled.
“Yes, I’m fine,” he said in a thick Irish brogue. “I’m sleeping it off, or I was. But thank you very much, anyway,” he said.Mum went home and I went to catch my bus for work. I was glad he wasn’t dead, just dead drunk.