Goodbye – a short picturebook
Goodbye is always the hardest word to say.
Unless you’ve got a mouthful of toffee and you’re trying to say “onomatopoeia”. As far as annunciation goes, that’s a toughie.
This story in pictures is the only honest and real way I can think that people actually say goodbye. Nobody ever manages the romantic rubbish of Hollywood; staring unblinkingly into each other’s eyes and using short sentences, imbued with meaning and direct honesty, each back and forth constructed to perfectly conclude at the train guard’s whistle. Real life is nothing of the sort. It’s full of awkward silence, the odd inconveniently timed sneeze and quite a bit of ooh-do-you-think-we-have-time-to-get-to-that-sandwich-stall-over-there-it’s-got-quite-a-queue-but-we-were-out-of-milk-so-I-didn’t-get-a-chance-to-have-breakfast-this-morning-before-we-set-off-for-the-train-station-and-oh-bugger-your-number-just-came-up-on-the-departure-board-we-best-get-you-on-that-train-then.
Whatever words do come out, they usually never sound quite as good outside of your head as they did inside it. And so, however goodbyes come – and in whatever setting; train stations, airports, hospitals or anywhere else – the best you can do is to be true to who you are and how you are the rest of the time. You don’t need to spout a magnificent soliloquy that’s accompanied by a soaring orchestral melody to express yourself. You just need to be honest. And if you manage that, then chances are the other person will, too.
It won’t be Hollywood. But it will be real, authentic and special and frankly that is infinitely better.