Opinion: Smoke-free reward in heaven

We have all been there: standing at the 10 or less items checkout aisle at the supermarket when the assistant moves over to serve a smoker who has not entered the store.

When we leave that shopping centre we make it through the wall of smoke puffed up by shoppers waiting to go into the centre or their first drag after finishing their visit.

Ditto for restaurants, hotels, recreation centres, bus stops, places of worship.

We hope that there is a smoke-free place for us when we get old.

No, in aged care facilities staff escort smokers to an area in the garden where they can smoke.

Away from the sound of the television, away from the continually meandering resident, those geriatric smokers are in their equivalent of heaven. Once again we are queuing for somebody to assist us.

As the martyrs of old were secure in the knowledge of their eternal reward, we are secure in the knowledge that there is a final place for us, free of smoke.

St Peter comes with his pen, and his book of names to serve us with our eternal reward.

First there is the hiccup that occurs whenever a queue forms: two smokers are now within his vision so St Peter closes his book and moves over to the area where those two are standing.

We all wait.

When the three finish their fags, the smokers walk away, St Peter comes back to the queue, picks up his pen, opens his book and says, “Next”!!