The Avon Lady
The Avon Lady comes every other week or so. She usually comes on a Thursday or a Saturday, sometime after dinner. She brings a big green Avon bag stuffed with catalogues and free samples. She comes wearing bright colours and a big smile. She puts her bags down in the common area, goes around, knocks on doors, lets people know she is here. She engages in chit chat with everyone, shows the new catalogue to the ladies and shares make-up tips with them. She does everything like all the Avon Ladies in the world.
She is just a little bit different. The Avon Lady is in her twenties. She is a secondary school teacher. She has bright red hair and freckles and perfect
white teeth. She also has a reconstructed right breast. The Avon Lady is a breast cancer survivour.
She comes every other week to let the other survivours know that they, too can be beautiful, that they, too, can feel normal. She comes
and does make up, foot treatments, nails and everything else that anyone on the floor needs. And when the time to leave comes, she leaves the free samples
behind. One lady gets a little lipstick, another becomes the proud tester of some face creme. A little bottle of nail polish here, a perfume sample there. Small treasures for those on the floor. Men and women, who want to feel beautiful. Men and women, who yearn for being normal. Men and women, who need
small miracles to keep going. Men and women, who otherwise lack the means to get the things the Avon Lady sells.
The Avon Lady never makes profit on the floor. With an order here and there she just breaks even. Some months she spends a small fortune on the samples, but she still comes and indulges the patients. She pampers them, spoils them, makes them feel human.
The Avon Lady comes and she creates a spot of spring in the autumn.