Hurray! Tom has sold a painting! The lovely Martin, of Apple Gallery in Goldaming, phones with the good news. When we’ve finished dancing around the kitchen, Tom looks slightly crestfallen, ‘I like that painting,’ he says, before cheering up at the thought that he can now buy himself a new a bit of framing kit. I’m thrilled; I always think Tom deserves wider recognition so I love it when someone else acknowledges his talent, though it is an odd feeling when paintings disappear. I always hope they’ve gone to a good home where they’ll be cherished... and admired by the new owners’ friends who will rush out and buy more.
The next day we set off in Lester-the Fiesta to rescue The Red Car, our Berlingo, which has been slowly nursed back to health by Dai-the-Garage. Dai can’t bring himself to say the words out loud when we ask how much it’s all cost, he just pushes the bill across the desk at us with a muttered apology. Sheesh! That wipes out the sale of Tom’s painting and another one besides. Ah, well, it was nice to enjoy the feeling of having some spare cash in the system while it lasted.
Tom’s brother and family stayed with us for half term and on Thursday we walked up to the lake at Craig Cau at Cadair Idris where we stopped and had a picnic. Tom and I have walked up here lots of times and there’s always something special about being in the mountains, but on Thursday I felt particularly connected to the landscape. I’m not especially strong on describing the beauties of nature, as I’m more of a ‘people’ rather than ‘place’ person, but I just felt very peaceful that day.
When we got home there was a message from my cousin to ring him, and when I did he told me, very gently, that my Uncle Sid, had died. It seemed Uncle Sid just couldn’t bear being alive without my Auntie Joanie. Tom and I had visited him in the residential home he’d moved to shortly after Auntie Joanie died. It was a good home, he was well-cared for, but you didn’t need to be a genius to see that his heart was broken. I have lots of memories of Uncle Sid, but I’ll always remember him at family parties (of which there were many) looking round the room with pride and appreciation saying, ‘We’ve got bloody good-looking women in our family!’
Goodbye, Uncle Sid, give my love to Auntie Joanie and Dad when you see them.
I finished my poetry TMA, hurray! A few of us met up in Cardiff last Saturday (thanks, Alex, for organising it) and it really helped to read some work out loud to each other. I’ve really enjoyed this course and learned so much through it, but there’s only ten weeks left. Where’s the time gone?
Blink and you’ll miss it. None of us can say what lies ahead, but I am very grateful for what I have here and now. On St David’s Day, Tom and I celebrate ten years of marriage. Thank you, Tom. Always.
The painting, now sold, is ‘Late Light – Preseli’ by Tom Tomos.