by Myles Abroad
Sometimes events don't go according to plan...
Eamon Moore approached the stone humpback bridge; each step crunched on the gravel path running alongside the river. His spirits soared to the chorus of birdsong as he watched the cherry blossom petals float down on the warm breeze and settle in the water.
For the umpteenth time, he retrieved the small box from his pocket, opened it and let the sunlight glisten off the diamond ring. This was a date to remember: April 27, 2008.
Eamon slowed his stride remembering their argument. He put the ring in his pocket and swallowed. They agreed to meet on the bridge but would she show?
He smiled when he saw Sandra crest the bridge holding a bundle of flowers. He quickened his pace, then stopped, aware something was amiss.
He watched her lean over the wall, her face grief-stricken, as she stared into the river. She cast the bouquet into the water, kissed her fingers and touched them to the inside of the wall. Downcast, her arms folded, she continued across the bridge.
Eamon glanced over his shoulder when he heard a child laugh and noticed a man and his son playing. When Sandra stepped off the bridge, she looked up and smiled.
"Sandra...," Eamon said, but she kept walking, forcing him to stand aside.
The boy ran into her arms. "Mammy!"
She embraced him, then kissed the man and together they continued their walk.
Watching them tore Eamon's heart. Tears streamed down his cheeks as he mounted the bridge and paused where Sandra had stood. Remembering her gesture, he looked down at the wall and noticed a plaque:
May 23, 1980 - April 27, 2008