Madison Avenue | Amy Short

If anyone can do it, the girl scouts can.

Amy Short

Madison Avenue

The Wood Be Good Award

Sarah had been filled with beads of dread and reminiscence when the SatNav told her she would have to drive through her old town. She had spent the years seven to eighteen there; until she went off to university. The plan had been to take a shortcut through a nearby village but potholes and road closures had led her to the right here and now, Madison Avenue.

When she was girl, Madison Avenue was nothing to be desired. Now, it looked like the pillar of the village community. She could see the slow progress that had been made across the streets, clean pathways and beautiful flowers blooming as summer came forth.

Her hands were wrapped around the steering wheel and she was just about to pull away when a light knock on the window startled her.

“Hiya, darling, I was wondering if you’d like to help us out with our village makeover,” the woman said, keeping a close eye on the young children in scout uniforms scrubbing away. As she turned to face Sarah, she realised who it was. “Sarah isn’t it?”

Sarah nodded, trying to place the woman. It had been years since she’d been back and had forgotten most of the faces.

“You don’t remember me. I’m Melissa, Mrs Jefferies’ granddaughter, you used to babysit for me.” At Sarah’s still confused look she continued. “I put pink paint all over your coursework.”

“I remember. You brat. What are you still doing here? I thought you’d have escaped whenever you had the chance.”

“I did for a while, university and what not but it wasn’t for me. Dropped out after a year. Now I run the scouts and we’ve decided to makeover the village. It was in an awful state. You’re more than welcome to join us.”

“I would love to but I’ve got a wedding to get to. I’ll pop back in though, when I’ve got a minute.”

Melissa swore her to her offer and Sarah drove off. As she left the village and entered a new town, she realised it hadn’t been that bad at all.