The Queenie of Hadleigh

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“I postpone death by living, by suffering, by error, by risking, by giving, by losing”
– Anais Nin

And I ran though the moving crowd, weaving in and out of suits and bags and shoes and limbs. Pushing forward through a rush hour of people, it was warfare; the quicksand making everything more difficult. And I carried on fighting forward until the call came… It was too late. She had gone!

And everything suddenly stopped.

The door opened and there she stood; bright red lipstick highlighting her cheeky smile. She would always kiss me on my lips with such delicateness, inside I would smile.

And there we would sit for ages surrounded by colourful crochet and ornaments and fabric flowers and the gas fire and small ornamental furry cats and sepia toned pictures hanging proudly on the walls. A room filled with trophies of a life fully lived.

Every now and then the sound of a snooker ball crashing into another followed by muffled applause would float out of the TV to catch her attention just long enough for me to stare at this frail, curly haired funny woman who fascinated me.

Reaching the front door she stopped and turned to the cupboard beneath the stairs. I always knew what was coming but managed to appear pleasantly surprised every time. Rummaging around for a moment she span around like a magician to reveal a tiny bag of sweets which she had pre-prepared in little clear plastic bags. There was always a treasure of sweet treats to leave with and I always felt the overwhelming urge to squeeze her so tightly when we hugged.

And there she stood, waving and watching until we were finally out of sight.

In life, people come and go. Some stay for only a few minutes and others, a lifetime. And if we are really lucky, these people will leave an indelible mark on our hearts and there they will live eternally making us a better person in the process.

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6 thoughts on “The Queenie of Hadleigh

  1. R.I.P Nanna Queenie, we all loved the 'magic' of the cupboard under the stairs that could produce sweets at the drop of a hat. XXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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