I started writing my story this morning.
It was hard.
It was hard to know where to begin. It was hard to know what to include. It was hard to know when to stop.
I still intend to write it but I was very glad this morning when Bob phoned and asked me to go and see Audrey with him. I needed the break from it.
Audrey is a lovely elderly lady who comes to our Bingo and often stops by to chat when we are gardening at the park.
I have developed a deep fondness for her and have been helping her sort a few things out. Her husband who is a double amputee had to go into a nursing home last year. He has dementia.
Audrey is a very sprightly, extremely well groomed and very gently lady. I have a lot of time for her and pop round frequently for a cup of tea and a chat.
Audrey lives in what should be a very pleasant flat. It WAS a very pleasant flat until a drug user moved in next door. Now Audrey is afraid. She has addicts sitting on a low wall just outside her house and she feels unsafe. We are working to try and change things for her and we will!
Audrey's husband had a mobility scooter, this is kept in a 'safe' lock up within the flats. Unfortunately the drug user also has access to the lock up.
A few days ago someone tampered with the mobility scooter attempting to force the ignition.
Today Bob and I moved the scooter to the pavilion where it will be safe and Bob will mend the ignition for her.
Just before I left Audrey told me she had something for me and she gave me this:
How lovely is this?
Audrey knows about my love of baking and she knew how much I would treasure this book.
I don't know how old it is but it has an inscription inside which although rather faded appears to be wishing her a Happy Christmas in 1966 (which just happens to be the year I was born).
The book is in imperial measurements and the UK parliament announced plans to go metric is 1965 so I think that date probably is correct and anyway, I think in imperial as I was taught to cook by my Grandmother so I always have to use a conversion table for metric recipes.
After helping Audrey Bob invited me round for a cup of coffee at his house. I stayed for an hour or so chatting and playing with Charlie his little terrier.
On my way home I passed Sue putting rubbish into her bin. Or maybe she was taking it out ... Maybe it wasn't her bin at all - who knows?
She waved and shouted a cheery hello to me as I passed.
As I approached my house I saw Nigel who lives across the road chatting to the postman. He also waved and asked how I was.
As I stopped outside on my bike Roger who lives a few doors down pulled up and stopped to chat for a bit.
As I put my key in the door I heard another person greet me. It was Sam who used to have a lovely dog who was blind. I used to walk around the park with him when I was taking Gus out. He stopped to ask after Gus and to see how I was.
Eventually I came in and sat down and inexplicably started to cry.
All of these lovely people who waved so cheerfully or stopped to talk to me.
They are all my friends and neighbours.
Some are a little odd - some VERY odd - all of them are kind and caring and a part of my life in some small (and sometimes bigger) way.
If Ex Lax gets his way they will soon no longer be my neighbours because I will have to sell the house I have lived in for 31 years.
If Ex Lax gets what he wants then Miss Mac and I will soon be homeless.
That is what I started to write about this morning before Bob's phone call.
I'm so glad he phoned. If I hadn't gone out I wouldn't have been reminded how kind and caring most people are.
I think that's what made me cry - I don't cry easily you know.