On 15 February 1999, Bobby proposed to Diddley at the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust at Slimbridge in Gloucestershire.
In a bird hide. In the dark, with “Swan Lake” floodlit and just the Bewick swans as witnesses. Salut d’Amour. Had he not that night, she confided in him, that she would have asked him.
On 15 February 2018, we shall be back at Slimbridge gathering material for a blog on ducks as promised. Celebrating what we had and what we still have.
During their time together, Bobby was quite involved with the British Heart Foundation (BHF). You saw last week all those London to Brighton bike rides in his Shredded Wheat shirt to raise funds for the BHF. In more recent times, the BHF have had a Valentine’s Day fund raising initiative. Buy a heart and write a message for all to see in their window during the weeks preceding Valentine’s Day. Bobby and Diddley wrote theirs each year. Salut d’Amour. The last ones in 2015 being enlarged by the coffin designers to form the centre piece of their design. (Had he known the immediate future, Lucinda would not have appeared).
The tradition continues, and each year he writes a love heart. This year, granddaughter Kyla May got in on the act.
Each day, more hearts appear. Reading the inscriptions it is “heartwarming” to note that many are to no-one in particular, but to everyone benefiting from the work of the BHF. It’s also noticeable how many are in loving memory of those we miss. If you have a BHF shop nearby, why not join in? Salut d’Amour!
No extras this week. Just a little melancholic music. Not sad, but seeking serenity in a mad world.
Tristesse. Chopin. Lang Lang.
I have to add a “PS” to last week’s Shredded Wheat blog.
The first centenary bowl came from a charity shop. Seven more came from eBay, of which two were given by Diddley to her son years later. One bid was for two. One from Philadelphia. Only one attracted counter bidding, which Bobby lost at the last moment. At which Diddley comes flying down the stairs to tell him she has won a bowl. A bit more expensive, but on the last bid. Only for them to realise they had been bidding against each other. Ha ha ha!
Lighting a Candle for Diddley.
“Since I lost my parents, when the opportunity arises, I light a candle in their memory. Now I light two. One for Diddley. There are constant reminders of her in my house: the china pot for earrings, the shot glasses, the little angel bought on our trip to Dublin, the bargain scarves from M&S, the many books… We became friends back in the 1960s and always referred to each other as “my oldest friend.” There is a gap losing such a constant friend, although in recent years our encounters were few. I miss you, Diddley.
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