Yes Virginia, you are jolly well eighty years old. Promise I tried not to advertise it but the inner sixteen in me bobs up every now and then and I do love a party.
On Mother’s Day, this particular mother was given a milk bottle and a lunch box – two presents that truly surprised me.
There are not many crises that can’t be improved by a cup of tea.
It’s been nearly a year since I found my beloved BH slumped in the shower. I still shudder at the memory. But his native strength (you can’t keep a good Balt on the floor), and his “medical man”, as he calls him, have pulled him round.
I have a new friend. We have not come face to face — yet. He is four years younger than I am and way way cleverer. My friend is one of the Jewish children rescued by Fr Adam Sztark and Sisters Ewa and Marta.
Just as the train started to move away Fr Sztark was seen, noticeable in his long black cassock, pushing through the crowd to their wagon. He just had time to give a blessing, and to hand BH a small wooden crucifix. Then the train slowly rumbled out of Slonim railway station heading for Siberia.
It was never called “Herod the Monster” or “Follow That Star”; it was only ever “The Christmas Show”. Children thrive on rituals and routine, and ours were no exception.
Chances are, you will come across a Nativity this December. I stood aside for a crocodile of diminutive shepherds, a HOST of angels, three kings, Mary and Joseph, of course, and a quantity of woolly animals including a giraffe – and, surprisingly, Mickey Mouse.
There are a thousand and one other things I mean to do before I die. But since it’s the almighty doctor asking for instructions, something must be done.
Nonsensically, I have always been jealous of BH’s 1940s pin-up, Joan Leslie. When we first marry I deride her “homely” look, refer to her as “Joanie,” and retaliate with Gregory Peck — but it’s water off a duck’s back.