Alice was already a young mother when she discovered she had cancer of the nose. She was in her mid-20s, the target age of trashy magazines and ‘natural-looking cosmetics’. She had a shy smile and dimples in her cheeks, and she had passed on her traits to her two daughters.
Alice’s husband Abel, a hunter and farmer, loved her, and, unlike many other husbands, listened to her. Her small children hung on to her every word.
Alice lived by a river in rural Sarawak, 300km (as the helicopter flies) from the nearest hospital. She had noticed a swelling growing around her left eye for six months, but she could not afford the RM200 trip to Miri Hospital.