For Veronica, now fifty years old, the most dreadfully important thing in life was to display independence, self-worth and happiness. And to display this independence, self-worth and happiness not only before friends and work colleagues, not only in front of her husband and her grown-up children, but to strangers everywhere! So that when she walked down the street she bounced! She marched! She strode! When in actual fact, if she was being true to herself, she would have rather crawled, with her head bowed, like an insect.