A quarter century back I wrote an article about the joys of reading the newspaper classifieds. (ref) Sadly no longer, at least with the metropolitans.
But not so with the provincial papers with their local news focus and corresponding intimacy. Take these two snippets from the Hawkes Bay Tribune of February 12th.
At the top of one page came this startling Personal Column classified item.
Wakely, Gloria Dale (Daley Sissy)
Long forgotten. Won’t be missed.
Estranged daughter Melanie
Stunned, I did the obvious and turned to the Death Notices and sure enough I found,
Wakely, Dale, nee Robson
Loving daughter of the late Reg and Lorna, sister of Rewa, Ken, Glen and Lance.
Outsiders can pass no judgement not knowing the circumstances which could induce such loathing, even after death. Nevertheless, intuition makes me side with Melanie. Still, I’ll go to bat for Mum on one count, despite her possibly having been an axe murderer, and remind Melanie that at least her mother gave her a beautiful name. This is Hawkes Bay remember where she might have been scarred for life with a Sharlene or Tracy moniker.