Monday, 25 October 2010

A great day

Today we had a brilliant afternoon out. We were due to be meeting our friend, Elizabeth Berner, to whose husband, Tim, I dedicated I Choose Everything. He had MND for 20 years. He inspired me with the conviction that terminal illness is not a curse but even a blessing - a severe one admittedly. But we're certainly not victims. That has really helped me. Anyway, we'd arranged to meet at The High Table on the High Street in Oxford.
So Jane and I drove in and, miraculously, found the last disabled parking space in the centre. Someone was just driving out of it. It was a clear crisp day, with bright blue skies shining on the mellow gold Oxford stone of the colleges. Getting in to the restaurant was a bit of comical struggle. Jane and a waitress heaved the wheelchair, and then a passing young man offered to help - and in I went. Soon Elizabeth walked in and we ordered our meal.

The food was excellent; the service was delightful; but what made the meal was just being with someone who exactly knew what we're going through, as she and Tim had been there before. So I could pass on some of my salad to Jane and Elizabeth. She was tuned in to me and understood what I was getting at. We talked about families, teaching, Shakespeare, faith, her time at Oxford, as well as incidentally illness. And it was just a really lovely time.

Life isn't bad, is it?


  1. An interesting concept in your first paragraph. 'a severe blessing'

  2. A wonderfully positive note on which to end! "When you have thanked your God for every blessing sent..." etc etc.

  3. It sounds like a perfect Oxford October day!