The anxwer to that last question hit me at four in the morning; baking. Mother never rated herself as a cook (I’d disagree), but she was a great baker of cakes, biscuits and puddings. Her fruit cake was famous in several countries. It was something she would give me when I was going away from home, so travelled to France, was sampled in southern Italy and in the US. I am not a great fan of fruit cake, but Mother’s was the exception. Always baked in a tin with a hole in the centre so it was easy to slice. I don’t know when she baked her last one. I have been trying to remember when she stopped baking, but I have failed.
I met my friend Octavia, and we walked up to the Thames where I gave back various things I have found on the foreshore to the river. Octavia read through my tribute, pointed out the places where it needed clarification, and gave it her approval.
Did it, I wanted to know, give a picture of Mother? She reassured me that it did.
We had a drink, well actually two drinks, at the pub, and talked about lots of things, but mainly death and grief. She loved the Debi Gliori poem I am reading at the funeral. Tonight I ordered a copy of it from AbeBooks for her. We talked about the healing power of reading; the healing power of writing; poetry as a way of expressing and communicating. Animals.
Tomorrow I go to one of my work places. I am anxious about it, but with today’s conversations behind me, I hope I am in a good place and shall cope with however it goes.