Last night, I had an email from an old friend, former blogger Badgerdaddy. I’d been thinking of him for a few days myself and meant to get in touch. I visited him, some eight and a half years ago, in Ludlow. He lived in a one bedroom flat and had offered me the sofa – in the event, he insisted I took his bed and he shared the couch with Millie, the Wonder Dog.
He’d been invited for dinner with friends and asked if he could bring me along. Their faces, when we arrived, were a picture. Obviously, when told that a friend was staying, they assumed it was a girlfriend and they were bemused, if politely trying not to show it, when a much older woman turned up, especially when I relaxedly chatted to their small children and was obviously used to grandchildren. I explained the situation over dinner – ‘just good friends’ can mean exactly that. We’d met when Badgerdaddy lived in Yagnub and was a customer at Alex’s greengrocery.
Anyway, when I told him about Tim he was shocked and, once he’d put his young sons to bed, he WhatsApped me and we had a long chat. I was telling Wink about it this morning and we agreed that I must take road trips and visit friends as soon as I can. I’m feeling restless and want to catch up with people in person. But that won’t happen for a few months yet, apart from Sophie, whom I mentioned the other day, because she’s close enough to visit in a day.
The visit to Reading went well, the photos should have been taken by now and, once they’ve all been processed and a video tour put together, the house will go on the market. Wink was wonderful, she worked extremely hard cleaning the house with me. I’d bought a new duvet cover and taken it down on a kingsize duvet for the main bedroom – not that there was anything wrong with Tim’s, but sprucing the place up a bit never goes amiss. And a kingsize duvet on a double bed is always good too (and a double on a single bed eliminates the draughts that grown-ups manage to cause, every time they turn over in a too-small bed.
Friends asked us over for dinner. They’re two of Tim’s oldest and best friends and Carolyn was his wife Viv’s very oldest, they were at school together. They’ve been immensely kind to me.
The blog party hasn’t got a date yet, but it will certainly happen. Several people have already accepted the invitation. Late June or in July, I haven’t got a preference as yet. We had planned to have a mid-July party this year to celebrate Tim’s 80th birthday and, whilst I won’t lay a place for him as I’m neither superstitious nor macabre, I’m sure we’ll raise a glass in his honour.