Tuesday, January 31, 2023


Ollie gave me a shout mid morning. "I’ve got someone coming to look at the mini in 10 it would be nice to have some support." I pottered round to add my imposing physical presence to her close protection team. Actually, all joking aside, the purchaser was a very pleasant Asian fella from Wolverhampton who closed the deal, loaded the discombobulated vehicle on his flat back trailer and skedaddled. Before he did so, as I drank coffee in the kitchen, as the paperwork was completed and the funds were transferred, he said that this was the first time in his experience that a neighbour had come round with no other purpose than to lend moral support to a woman conducting a significant transaction with a stranger on her own. He, by the way, was in favour of it.

I think this is a terrible indictment of how we live. By some miracle we are blessed with a community in the 'Wood. I don't know how it happened, but happen it did and I am grateful for it.

It is not just local. Its tentacles extend throughout our island fortress. Ollie's son Jonnie, a close friend of my son since their first day in primary school, is playing football for his university against Cardiff Met on Wednesday and his mum is going to watch. When I was in Cardiff on the weekend, I cooked extravagantly on Saturday night, but when I loaded the dish washer on Sunday morning there were no tablets in the house so I couldn't fire it up. I was on a tight schedule with no time to pop to a supermarket that wouldn't even be open that early in the morning so I had to leave it. Ollie and family have stayed at mum and dad's in the past when attending a rugby game. If my brother hadn't already agreed to do it, I could have given her my keys and asked her to sort it out as she knows her way around 44.

And this gives me a warm feeling.

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