21 May 2020
My Dearest Boy,
What glorious weather we are having and what a special birthday I had! I did not wake up to the magnificent view of Katerina de Aragon’s Alhambra; nor did I fill my cup with the sensous fragrance of Giverney;
nor even did I walk again that old familiar path along the River Frome to the resting place of the heart of the man who “used to notice such things”.
Instead I walked near my own birthplace along the banks of the River Ver, hoping to spy that elusive kingfisher. I ate al fresco the birthday cake you and Mummy made me and I snuggled my legs up on the sofa beside Grandad T watching my favourite film for my obligatory dose of Dorset.
I first visited my spiritual home of “Wessex” as a 16th birthday treat from my Daddy. I fell in love with the area before I physically knew it after being introduced to Hardy’s novels by Michael Lucas, my forbidding, yet inspirational English teacher. He and Mrs Bridger (Geography) gave me enthusiasm for life as well as their subject areas. I hope you come to know such teachers. Walking in Dorset brings these two passions of Geography and English together.
I have been called to the area times beyond your present counting ability (which I hear increases by the week!) Each time I fall in love again. Your Daddy and I walked down from Cerne Abbas to Abbotsbury as part of my 60th birthday celebrations last year. Such a gift he gave me.
So this year my journeying was different. I have literature, poetry, film, photographs, music and the most beautiful memories tucked away safely in my heart.
I won’t ever forget your video call this year, my Dearest Boy. You particularly asked to call me, which means the world. I think, however, you expected me to be having a party and couldn’t quite understand the absence of balloons and a bouncy castle! You sang to me. I celebrated in my own way, in my heart. What a wonderful life I have!
Grandad T and I love and miss you,