Sydney Lawson was nineteen and lived on a farm in the middle of the countryside with her mother and father. But there were only a few cows and sheep, a horse and no pigs on this farm because the main produce of the Lawson family was the green stuff out in the fields. They grew some of the smaller and hardier varieties of watermelon.
At six o clock on Monday morning, Sydney pulled her pillow down over her head and groaned. The walls of their farmhouse were made of thick stone but they still didn't quite block out the sounds of her father's machinery. Baz had always been an early riser, his daughter was not. Sydney threw the pillow aside and swung her legs over the edge of the bed, the wooden floor was cold under her feet. She stretched before assuming a defensive stance and punching, weaving and dodging her way to the bathroom. Sydney's self-defence instructor had said this was a great way to wake up the body but by the time she reached the bathroom, Sydney was yawning and dragging her feet. Guess that little pearl of wisdom could be thrown out with the bath water.
It was almost an hour later when Sydney appeared in the kitchen doorway. She wore blue jeans with a white vest and her blonde curls were yanked back into a rather sever ponytail. The kitchen was huge; it ran almost the length of one side of the farmhouse. There was a table in the centre of the room made from an old oak tree that had been blown down last winter, a wood burning stove sat in one corner while the more modern appliances were opposite. The fridge, freezer, dish washer, washing machine and dryer lined the other wall. Cupboards were everywhere, filled with pots and pans, food and some tools.
"Good morning, lovely" called Aerial. She was standing in front of the stove, a pan of sizzling bacon on the heat. Sydney sat down at the table and poured herself a cup of tea and a glass of orange juice, the door opened and Baz strode in.
"Hello ladies" he called, grabbing Sydney in a hug that would have made a bear wince. He dropped into a seat and helped himself to eggs, sausages, toast and coffee. Sydney loaded up her own plate, taking bacon when her mother had added it to the table. Aerial sat and watched her family eat for a moment before smiling and leaning her elbows on the tables. Sydney and Baz stopped mid chew, they glanced at each other before turning back to Aerial.
"I need to ask you both something" she said, her eyes on a knot in the table top. Sydney swallowed her food and reached for the teapot again, she suddenly wished she had something stronger. That tone of voice could only mean one thing.
"When are they coming?" asked Baz, he flopped back in his seat and seemed to deflate.
"Well, I spoke to Rita and she said they would be here this afternoon. Mick and the kids are coming too. I've got their rooms ready and you two don't have to do a thing!" cried Aerial, her voice was rising a little. Sydney and Baz glanced at each other again before deciding to just nod. They were solitary people and were happy with no company but their own but Aerial was a social creature. She had given up a lot to move out into the middle of nowhere with her husband and Sydney supposed they could deal with the snobby Petersons for a few days.
"Do you want me to meet them at the station?" asked Sydney. Aerial glowed and nodded; she went back to the stove and refilled the coffee pot. Baz looked across at his daughter; he winked and went back to his breakfast. Sydney smiled and refilled her plate; it was a long walk to the station.