Tomorrow my next door neighbour’s daughter is leaving for university. She is a lovely lass and I am sure she will do well.
We caught the train from St Ives to London, me and my Dad, and stayed overnight with my Aunty Joy. In the morning we drove down to Kent in her purple mini. I remember telling him to go, because more than anything I didn’t want him to leave me. The anticipation of the parting pain was too much. I sat on the institutional bed in my hall of residence room, all alone in the world and beside myself with terror and sorrow. Then a tap at my door, and the smiling face of someone who was to become a friend for life. An ally when I most needed it. A threshold had been crossed.
I made Meg a bouquet of dried lavender flowers to take with her. It may help.
Today is my birthday. I love birthdays. I may have mentioned it before. Any excuse to be special for a day. But I am not telling you this in the faint hope you might send me a tiara or a Nebuchadnezzar of Dom Perignon. A nod and a smile would be quite enough. A kiss might be nice.
For some reason on this day I have been reminded of when my much-loved Dad died. Returning to work the top boss, who I did not respect and therefore did not consider to have any authority over me and was not to be confused with my proper boss who was a gent and an Irishman, said “this happens every day” in way of condolence. I am not being maudlin, I am just wondering why he thought it an appropriate thing to say.
But of course it does. As do birthdays.
It has been a challenging day for a few reasons:
a) I’ve hurt my back. I am in official denial about this in the hope that if we don’t mention it again it might disappear as quickly as it appeared;
b) after exhaustive avoidance tactics I was bitten on the ankle by a horsefly and stung in various places by nettles;
c) it was so hot I threw in the towel at 2.30 and headed for a cold shower.
In order to present a balanced review of the day’s proceedings I should also mention the following:
b) Chocolate with Ferrero Rocher;
c) Eton Mess;
all homemade by the extremely talented Biddi. It helped.
Once, when I was a little, little, girl I was skipping down a London thoroughfare with my family. On reflection, my family were probably not skipping, they were more than likely either being dragged or dragging curious children towards their destination. Shall we say it was Tottenham Court Road, that is close enough and has a certain ring to it. As my innocent wide eyes scanned the hubbub a hand thrust a bunch of flowers my way. I gratefully accepted this gift from the generous benefactor. A second passed. My mother grabbed the flowers out of my hand, sent them straight back to the gipsy woman who had delivered them with a “no thanks” and yanked me on my way. I remember being rather puzzled by these proceeding. Only years later did I realise that you rarely get something for nothing, one of the many lesson my Mum has taught me. Today is her birthday. It would be rude not to say something.
To MBM from YBD
Sorry I won’t be there, I’ll make it up to you, hope this suffices and you haven’t changed the will yet. x
Yesterday morning I had a very enjoyable few hours working in Mr and Mrs Bun’s garden. The weather was fair and we achieve a lot. There was cake and coffee from Mrs B, a chat with Mr B about Munroe climbing and cuddles from Bobbie. All was well in the world and off I went with a cheery wave and a trug full of left overs from Mrs B’s always generous seed sowing.
Five minutes later I was ringing their door bell.
The road through the village is narrow, as indeed is much of my route home. The recycle lorry had met the Travis Perkins truck in a particularly challenging part not far from The Bun’s residence. Inbetween and behind were a queue of bemused/panicked/impatient holiday makers. As I put my tools back in the car a hopeful lady wondered if I was going her way as the bus hadn’t turned up, stuck somewhere down the line no doubt. Sorry, I said, I’m not. I considered my options: a) join the hubbub and find out who wins the battle between Godzilla and King Kong, or b) fall at the mercy of the The Buns for a cup of tea and a chat whilst the gridlock sorted itself out. As discretion is definitely the better part of valour I naturally chose b).
After half an hour and a nice cuppa all was clear. Well apart from a family of wobbly cyclists, the Travis Perkins truck returning the other way, the sat nav unfortunates and a tractor. Simple.
After chasing a bee around wind-blown lavender for two incredibly tedious minutes, a previous announcement in a post Trending sprung to mind.
This may run and run.