|This lady was spotted in a McDonalds cafe and from her I've endeavoured to create a character that may have a place in the novel within me. All these sketches have their beginnings in a book, The Weekend Novelist, which I'm going through in an effort to give me the necessary propulsion to get this done. It's been my dream for too long, now it's time for reality! So here she is, character three - Pamelia LeCorres
Pamelia has an enigmatic manner, betraying little of her character or her origins. She hovers by a table, aloof, impervious, almost removed from her surroundings before she glides across the floor to join a group of exuberant young women. Although she is warmly welcomed, she doesn't seem to be a part of the group. Her manner is quite different from those of her companions; while they laugh raucously, she simply smiles; while they chatter uncontrollably, she gently tilts her head towards the speaker and nods. Yet she is accepted, her companions hug her and seem almost to fight to gain her attention and she accepts her court with grace.
Her body language screams isolation, folded arms, crossed legs, distracted gaze. Every so often she will inject a comment into the conversation, or a self-conscious laugh to become a part of the group; but for the most part she is content to be on the periphery. Her heart is elsewhere, she is distracted and edgy, although her companions seem not to notice.
Pamelia's build is slight, almost skinny, of medium height, but with a figure that makes her appear taller than she is. The clothes she wears serve to accentuate her slim, elegant build. She is the epitome of fashion-model style, wearing the clothes as nobody else could. She tries to avoid attention and dresses down her natural elegance every time, but never quite succeeds. On any other person, the dress would be drab and shapeless; Pamelia unconsciously adds a belt and it becomes a statement of her distinctive style which refuses to be hidden.
Her shiny black hair has never seen a hairdresser yet still swings loose and unfettered in a jaunty mid-length bob, which effortlessly complements her poise and form. The bob shifts from side to side as she scans the restaurant, nervously, first one side then the other, then the door before returning to her companions. Minutes later she covers the same path, trying to hide her apprehension with each look.
After some time, she begs her leave of the group and strides effortlessly through to the car park. Even her car reflects her natural grace, no ostentation here, merely functionality. The grey Holden Barina serves her well and draws no attention, although in a place like Timaru, she can't hide for long. Everybody knows Pamelia LeCorres, the eldest daughter of the LeCorres family.
Pamelia has lived in Timaru since her teenage years, her parents having moved from Temuka into the old church on Ashbury Park. Her favourite place in the entire house is the little sewing room overlooking the park. As a young girl, she would spend many hours watching her mother drive the sewing machine back and forth, producing wondrous fabric creations, clothes and coverings. Mother doesn't sew much anymore, but the memories are no less sweet.
Pamelia wants to be loved for who she is inside, not for who people thinks she is. She has spent her life living to expectations. Expectations within her family, expectations of others because of her family. Now she wants to be Pamelia - just Pamelia. She tries hard to hide her beginnings, but people always find out. She tries hard to trust people, but they always betray her. She wants to be normal.