“a small oak hutch”

I have been smiling all day. This morning I received a letter such as one can only dream of.

The letter notified me that my next door neighbour (for more than thirty years) had made me a specific legacy of “a small oak hutch”. I have no idea what this is exactly, but I am honoured that my neighbour should have thought of me in this context. She was an original, someone for whom both the words feisty and refined seem to be designed. She was never seen without brave lipstick. She was genuine, frank, demanding, warm and sometimes terrifying.

In WWII she worked for the ATS (Auxiliary Territorial Service), by the time we moved in next door she worked in local government. She lived from the age of two in the house her father built – and, with the help of devoted friends, she had her wish and died there at the age of ninety-two.

I shall cherish my hutch whatever it turns out to be.