Lovers meet and a wedding cancelled

After two years, Kathleen is now happily settled in Wexford, but she and her friend Veronica, who’s still in England, correspond regularly- every two weeks or so. She’s received a letter from Veronica telling her that she’s met someone and they’ve been talking about marriage. However, Veronica’s next letter reports that she’s pregnant and, although the father wasn’t happy about the news, he’d agreed to marry her. She asks Kathleen to be her bridesmaid. Albert – Veronica’s brother and the fella that Kathleen likes so much – is now home from the army and will be giving his sister away. Kathleen senses though that something is not quite right. She discusses it with her mother, Maggie, and agrees to return to England for the wedding.

When she disembarks from the ship at Liverpool, she is amazed and delighted to be met by Albert. She drops her case, runs to him and he picks her up in his arms. They hug each other and express their happiness at seeing each other again. Their bus back to St Helens isn’t due, so they go to a café for a cup of tea. Kathleen has lots of questions for him. Among his answers he mentions that the husband-to-be is a Dooley – a family with a bad reputation – and he’s a drinker who’s had a history of getting into bother.

Kathleen eventually asks Albert how he’s getting on and whether he’s met anyone special. He tells her that he’d met someone perfect for him when he’d met her years ago and that she’s the one who’s sitting with him. He professes his love for her but says that he’d understand if she’d met someone in Ireland. She tells him that she hadn’t realised that he’d felt that way, that she loved him too and that she’d wept on the ship that had taken her away from him to Ireland. As they leave the café, they kiss and confirm that they love each other.

They return to St Helens, having agreed not to tell Veronica yet about their love. Over the next day or so they all join in with preparations for the wedding, but Kathleen notices that Veronica didn’t seem really interested. Three days after her return, Kathleen meets Terry, the prospective bridegroom, for the first time. She dislikes and distrusts him on sight as being arrogant and a flirt. It’s clear to her that Veronica’s mum, Betty feels the same.

While Kathleen’s telling Albert of her suspicions, Veronica comes into the room, sees how they’re looking at each other and tells them that she can see how they feel about each other. She’s delighted. Kathleen persuades Veronica to come to the park with her for a walk. While they’re out, Kathleen asks Veronica what the matter is. Veronica confesses that she’s realised what a terrible mistake she’s made – she’d felt that Terry had been going to hit her when he found out about the baby.

Kathleen assures her that she needn’t marry him. They concoct a plot whereby Terry will be told that the baby has miscarried and that the doctor has told her to rest and to go for a holiday by the sea. Veronica will then return with Kathleen to Ireland and have the baby there. A cover story about an absent husband will satisfy the doctor, priest and neighbours there. Before they leave, as expected, Terry calls to suggest that the marriage be postponed.

Knowing that Kathleen will be leaving him again to go to Ireland, Albert worries about their future. In the meantime, having finished his National Service a while ago, he’s now working as an apprentice carpenter. He vows to save for a deposit on a house, hoping she’ll return in a year or two. In the meantime, both Kathleen and Veronica’s mum, Betty, realise that problems lie ahead. Veronica won’t be able to return home with the baby. Everyone will know that it’s Terry’s. Betty worries that her daughter is not the maternal kind anyway.

Kathleen and Albert talk. She’ll have to stay in Ireland until the future of Veronica and the baby have been worked out. He’ll work and save and she’ll look forward to a reunion soon.

Tomorrow – a return to Wexford – but for how long?

Today’s photo is one I took while on a day trip from the cottage where we stayed in Eyeries, on the Beara Peninsula of County Cork, Eire. We were driving around the coast and stopped at a village called Allihies. This is one of several photos I took there. I assume that the building on he hill is some sort of mine. I used a Pentax K3 ii 24 MP cropped sensor camera handheld with a 16-85 mm f/3.5-5.6 lens at 68 mm and f/16. The ISO was 200 and the shutter speed was 1/50 seconds.

Friends and family in Ireland

Maggie’s brother, William, meets her family as they disembark in Dublin. He drives them to Nan’s house, the former family home of Maggie and William. Nan’s name is Sheila and her husband, Kathleen’s granddad is Michael.

There is a happy reunion and news that the remainder of the family will be coming to meet and greet them the following day. The family were shown their rooms and enjoyed a supper that Sheila had cooked. That evening there were lots of memories to talk about. As she fell asleep that night, Kathleen’s last thought was of Veronica and Albert waving to her.

She sleeps well and awakes early to sunshine streaming through her window. She admires her room and the view from it of green hills. A cock crows in the distance. She opens her gifts from the people she’s left behind in England. There was a box of initialled, embroidered handkerchiefs from Betty, and a painting from Veronica of a scene they’d shared. Albert had given her a silver-coloured pen, notepaper and envelopes plus a note reminding her to write to him.

While her Nan cooks a huge cooked breakfast for her downstairs, Kathleen looks around the garden and meets Crackers a huge cat. She lets him in for his food. At breakfast she sits next to Grandad Michael and talks to him about his vegetable garden. After breakfast she joins him in the garden where he teaches her how to grow vegetables. She asks whether he has any pigs. He hasn’t but he asks about her interest.

That afternoon the remainder of the family join them. Three uncles with their wives and children and two aunties with their husbands and children. Just as Michael had said, Teresa was the one who made a bee line for her. Kathleen liked her and was happy to go for a walk with her.  She was overwhelmed with so many of them, but she had a way with children and soon they were all vying for her attention.

That evening she writes letters to Veronica and to Albert. In the days following she spends a lot of time with her Grandad in the garden and is fascinated by an old shed. Kathleen’s Mum and Dad are delighted by how she and her Grandad are getting on. A few days later her Granddad takes her out in his old car to meet a friend, Kevin, who breeds pigs. Kathleen spends a few hours there.

Kathleen also starts to get to spend time with her cousin Teresa and they find that they like each other. Teresa tells Kathleen that she likes her school but not the nuns. Kathleen tells her how much she’s come to love Ireland.

Tomorrow a letter has arrived from Veronica.

Today’s featured image is another I took in Ireland – on Abbey Island, Derrymane, County Kerry. I took this shot with my Lenovo P2 smartphone. The exif data are 1/250 secs, f/2, 3.59 mm and ISO 100.

A cold winter 1947

The story virtually ignores the Second World War as a minor interruption to the Wexford girl story. Maggie and her new husband, James, settle in to their new lives in England. Their friends, Jonty and Betty, in the years to the end of the war, increase the size of their family by four more children in addition to Veronica and her elder brother, Albert. By the end of the war, Veronica and Kathleen, Maggie’s daughter, become firm friends.

The tale instead moves on to 1947, to the coldest winter of the century on record at that time. Maggie and James worry about Jonty, Betty and their children. Money is tight and their old terraced house, like Maggie’s, is cold and damp, but James and Maggie are, relatively speaking, better off. James braves the snow and wind to buy boxes of food for Betty’s family. As an employee of the coal mine, James also has coal that he can spare for Betty’s fire.

The children play in the snow but the school had to close when Sister Mary slipped and ‘fell on her arse with her legs in the air.’ Veronica comes to stay with Kathleen’s family for the winter to ease the burden on Betty. All the children have only thin second-hand clothes to wear in that winter but neighbours help each other out. As winter progresses, even the coal mine has to shut down. The army is called in to clear the roads and railways. Thousands of people lose power to their homes.

Moving on to 1950, Betty’s family is relocated from their crumbling terraced house into a new Council house, two miles from Maggie’s. They promised to keep in touch and Kathleen hugged all her departing friend’s family – even Veronica’s elder brother, Albert. After his dad died, just after the war, Albert is now working and taking on chores that his dad would have been responsible for. Veronica and Kathleen remain close friends even after the house move.

As 1952 arrives, Kathleen receives a shock. Her parents, Maggie and James have decided that they want to return to Ireland, to their families and so that Kathleen can get to know her grandparents, aunts and uncles. Veronica isn’t the only one in her family to be devastated by the news. Her brother, Albert, has taken quite a shine to Kathleen. He will shortly be starting National Service and asks Kathleen to promise to write to him. She agrees on condition that he’ll write back.

Kathleen, who has been working for the priests for the past seventeen years gets a good recommendation from them to take with her. The teachers and sisters at the school all sign a greetings card for Kathleen. Meanwhile, Albert doesn’t know what to do. For the past four years he has been contriving excuses to visit Kathleen’s family hoping just to see her.

As the English shores disappear from the sight of passengers on the ship taking them to Ireland, Kathleen weeps, wanting to return. She’ll miss Veronica badly, but she’ll also miss Albert.

More tomorrow about their new life in Ireland.

I took today’s featured photo at Smuggler’s Cove, Ardgroom on the Beara Peninsula of County Cork Eire while I was on holiday. I used my former Pentax K3-ii 24 MM cropped sensor camera with a 16-85 mm f/3.5-5.6 lens at f/14 and 48 mm. The shutter speed was 1/40 secs and the ISO was 100. The shot was handheld.

The Girls of County Wexford

Okay, this is the start of a completely new subject for the next few days. My wife has now completed a draft of her second novel/novella. I’ve started proof-reading it and I’ll summarise it in my next few posts – starting today. She hasn’t thought of a title for it yet so, for the purposes of this post series, the title above will have to do. One of my wife’s ancestors came to England from Co. Wexford in the 19th century. I’ve never been there, so the nearest that I can come with my featured photos will be shots that I took in June 2017 while on holiday in the Beara Peninsula, County Cork – The Wild Atlantic Coast.

The story begins in 1935 when a young’ single girl, Margaret Lawlor emigrates from County Wexford to Liverpool, England to look for better opportunities there. On the ship taking her across she meets a single young Irish fellow, James Grennan, who asks to sit next to her. There’s plenty of time for conversation and she realises that he’s good looking and seems to be a nice person. He asks her where she’s headed for. She tells him that she hasn’t made up her mind yet. He tells her that he has work in the office of a coal mine in St Helens – 14 miles from Liverpool.

He tells her that he lives and works near a church where the priests are looking for someone to do their cooking. He says that she should be fine and safe with the priests and that he’ll introduce her to them. She agrees and is glad that she’ll have company on her way there because she hadn’t fancied asking her way around the docks in Liverpool on her own. James already has friends living in that area including a special friend Jonty and his wife, Betty.

The priests are delighted to meet her and offer her the job and a place to stay while she works for them. She settles in and proves to be an excellent cook. The priests are made up that they no longer have to put up with the terrible food that one of them has been feeding them. She starts seeing James from the ship regularly and two years later, one of the priests marries them.

In no time at all, Maggie gives birth to a little girl, Kathleen, and Betty, who already has a son, also gives birth to a daughter, Veronica. The two children soon become close friends.

Well, that’s a start. I hope you like it. More tomorrow.

Today’s featured photo is of the rugged Atlantic coastline near the Dzochen Beara Buddhist Retreat, Beara Peninsula, Co Cork, Eire. I took the shot with my former Pentax K3-ii 24 MP cropped sensor camera paired with a 16-85 mm f/3.5-5.6 lens at 53 mm and f/16. The shutter speed was 1/13 secs and the ISO was 100. The shot was handheld.

What’s Mary doing there?

It’s now a Wednesday afternoon, twelve days later. Adam has recovered enough to be transferred from the hospital in Bangor, Wales to the Walton Neuro neuro hospital on the outskirts of Liverpool. Poppy is on her way to visit him.

In the meantime, Adam has begun receiving physiotherapy exercises. Mary, his ex-wife – you remember she dumped him to take up with a doctor at the adjoining hospital – yes, that Mary – is a physiotherapist there. Uh, Oh! She sees Adam’s name on the section rota. One of her colleagues has been treating him. Over lunch, Mary pops in to see how he is.

It is as she’s leaving Adam’s side ward that Poppy arrives, sees and recognises her. She fears the worst – that Mary may have been trying to get back with him. She’s upset and worried and turns to leave. Mary sees her and calls her back by name.

Poppy challenges Mary to explain what seems to her to be a conflict of interest. Mary agrees but assures Poppy that she was just being friendly and that there was no chance that Adam would have wanted her back anyway. She tells Poppy that Adam had spent the whole of the visit saying how happy he was now that he was with Poppy. She tells Poppy to get in and see him.

What follows is the concluding excerpt :

As Poppy walked into the ward, Adam sat up to greet her. “Look what I can do,” he said.

“Yes,” she answered sternly, “I can see. You’ve obviously been practising with Mary”

He slumped back onto the bed. “Oh, God!” he said, his free arm covering his face, “You saw her leave?”

“She’s told me all about it – gloating that she’d win you back.”

He sat up again, shock written all over his face. “She didn’t,” he protested, “she couldn’t have said that.”

“Hah!” she snorted, “Don’t think that you can play the innocent with me”

“But…” he started but she interrupted,

“And if you think that I’ll put up with her coming to see you like that when we’re married, I‘ll break your other leg.”

He rocked back, dazed, struggling to take in fully what she’d just said, “Married?”

“Listen Buster,” she said pointing at him and advancing towards his bed, “pretending that you’d forgotten to take her photograph down, protesting now that you forgot that we’re engaged. The doctors never mentioned dementia. I don’t believe you.” But she was laughing now.

“Shove over,” she ordered and lay, face downwards on the bed beside him.  Her left arm was around his middle. Her head, facing his, was snuggled into his armpit.

“And once we’re married, I’m going to tie you to our bed to make sure that you never go climbing again.”

“Promises! Promises!” he said, smiling contentedly.

She leaned up and started tickling his other armpit.

“Owww!” he said.

“Oh, shut up moaning, Geek” she said. “and give me a kiss.”

Today’s photo is one that I took returning to Malham after a walk with a local Ramblers group, ready to go home. Today’s blog tells the end of my story as Adam is also, as he heals, on his way to returning to his home.

I took the photo with my 16 MP Pentax K-50 camera using an 18-55 mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens at 1/200secs, f/23.13, f/7.1 and ISO 800.

I still don’t know what to write about tomorrow.

Remorse and guilt

Neil took Poppy on the Monday following the accident to the hospital in Wales. As evening approached, the hospital staff advised them to get some sleep so that they’d be more use to Adam the following day. Mark, Adam’s dad, books rooms in a local hotel so that they can stay close to the hospital.

On the Tuesday, Adam remains in a coma but his condition is improving. The doctors expect that they’ll probably be able to bring him round the following day.

On the Wednesday afternoon, a nurse leads them to the ward to see Adam as he’s recovering consciousness. He’s groggy, having difficulty speaking and has no memory of the fall or of the preceding week. Poppy’s upset that he’s still confined by all the dressings and equipment, but realises that his recovery is going to be slow. At least she’s allowed to see his face.

As it becomes clearer to Adam what has happened to him, he realises that he’s missed Poppy’s birthday. Little does he know what Poppy had been saying about him on that day, but she tells him that he’s only got himself into hospital to avoid bringing her a card. She let’s him know that she’s only joking and kisses him again.

On the Friday, two days later, the medical staff are carrying out more tests and changing Adam’s dressings again, and the family wait outside the ward. It’s just before evening visiting and they are joined by Adam’s colleagues who were with him when he fell. Adam’s Dad thanks them for summoning help so quickly as it probably saved Adam’s life. Poppy tells them that she can’t thank them enough. One of them asks if she’s Adam’s sister. She tells them that she’s his girlfriend and one of them tells her that, seeing her, it’s understandable that Adam had been so miserable that week.

That comment just upsets her again as she realises that it’s her fault Adam was on the mountain in the first place. As the lads describe how the fall happened and how Adam had toppled backwards, she recalls what she had said about him. She adds to that the thought that Adam might have been feeling suicidal, thinking about how he’d been dumped yet again. Did he fall or did he jump, she wonders.

View Post

Another unrelated photo today, this time of a view over Loch Etive at Sunset near Oban in Scotland. I took this photo with my Pentax K50 16 MP camera in 2016 while I was on holiday. I used an 18-55 mm f/3.5 -5.6 kit lens at 38 mm and f/13. The shutter speed was 1/13 secs at ISO 200. I used a tripod.

Poppy goes to hospital

Adam’s family were informed late Saturday night about his fall and his transfer to hospital in Wales. The police have advised them not to visit until the hospital are ready. It’s a while before they realise that Poppy won’t know what’s happened. His Mum thinks that she may not wish to know because of the row between her and Adam. The rest of the family persuade her that they should inform her because they’re sure that they’d have made up fairly soon anyway. However, they don’t know how to get in touch with Poppy because they don’t have her address or phone number. Neil, Adam’s brother, comes up with a plan, but he can’t put it into effect until Monday.

On the Sunday, Poppy’s birthday, Adam’s family phone the hospital and are allowed to visit him. He remains in an induced coma but is being well cared for by the medical staff.

On the Monday morning, Neil phones the school where he teaches and is granted compassionate leave to visit Adam. He then telephones the Council office where Poppy works, but asks to be put through to Maddy, Poppy’s friend and colleague. He asks Maddy not to let Poppy know who’s on the line and explains about the accident. Maddy is shocked and tells him that Poppy will be in a meeting until eleven. Neil tells  Maddy that he’ll be in Reception at the Council offices by eleven and he’ll let her know when he’s arrived. They concoct a story to get her to go down to Reception where, unknown to her, Neil will be waiting.

When Poppy sees him, she assumes that Neil is only there to make excuses for Adam, but he persuades her to sit down because something awful has happened and that it’s important that she hears him out.  She agrees, reluctantly, to listen. When he gets to the part about the fall, the hospital and the coma, she slumps off her chair in a dead faint. A crowd gathers, a first aider arrives and, when she’s allowed to sit up again, she agrees immediately to go with Neil to see Adam. Maddy brings down her coat and instructs Neil to take care of Poppy. Maddy has promised to square Poppy’s absence with her manager.

They’ve only been travelling a few minutes when Poppy remembers what she’d said the previous day about Adam being dead to her. She feels sick and asks Neil to stop the car. She opens the door and vomits over the pavement. Neil helps her to clean up and they get back on the road. Filled with guilt and remorse she seeks more information from Neil about what has happened. Using her mobile phone, she speaks to Adam’s Mum, who’s at the hospital. She phones home, tells her Mum and Dad what’s happened and asks them to hold on to her dog, Buddy.

Once they reach the hospital she is met by Adam’s parents who take her to his bedside where she breaks down in tears at the sight, not only of his bruised and battered face, but also by the casts, dressings, tubes and monitoring equipment keeping him alive while he heals.

I haven’t got a relevant photo to feature today because of lockdown restrictions on non-essential travel. I had been going to photograph the Accident and Emergency entrance of a local hospital. I hope that you’ll understand the need for a general purpose photo today and tomorrow. I have no idea what I’ll be writing about after that.

So, today’s photo captures Autumnal spiders’ webs on our front gate. I took the shot in 2015 with my old Pentax K-50 16 MP camera plus an 18-55 mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens at 1/50 secs, f/4, 38 mm and ISO 200. I did the conversion to black and white in Lightroom.

A timely rescue from the sky

We left Adam yesterday unconscious at the foot of the mountain from which he’d fallen. He had clearly suffered broken bones and possibly worse. His left leg and arms were bent at impossible angles.

His colleagues, who had seen him fall, did everything they could to summon help, using their phones and a whistle, as they descended to try to find him. They waited with him once they’d located him – not daring to touch him in case they made his injuries worse.

Eventually they saw the approaching torches of the mountain rescue team in the distance, and heard their dog, but the falling cloud base was reducing visibility so they used a torch  to signal to them.  As the team approached on foot, the searchlight of a rescue helicopter also sought them.

A doctor in the team confirmed that Adam was alive but was not able to say more beyond agreeing that some of his bones were broken.  With help from other team members, the medic strapped Adam into a stretcher. The coastguard helicopter was unable to help, but an RAF mountain rescue helicopter took over, winched him up on the stretcher and took him to a hospital in Bangor where he was put into a coma to protect his brain as it healed.

The rescue teams had recorded and passed on the partial information about his next of kin that was known by his colleagues, and it was now the police in Cheshire who took on the task of finding his family and informing them. It was much later that evening when his shocked parents and brother were traced and told. It was later still when they remembered that Poppy would be unaware. They agreed that, despite the break-up, she ought to know, but they didn’t know how to contact her.

Fortunately, Neil, Adam’s brother, came up with a plan, but he couldn’t put it into action until after the weekend and – you’ll remember this would be after Poppy’s  birthday. More tomorrow.

The photograph featured today is an RAF Mountain Rescue Helicopter – obviously not the one in the story – that one is fictional. When I took this photo, however, I suspect that the crew thought that I might need rescuing – and they hovered for quite a while over me. Being honest I wasn’t sure myself whether I might need rescuing. I was climbing up the East face of Moel Siabod in Snowdonia in 2013, and the faint path that I’d been following. had disappeared. The scree was getting more and more treacherous – one foot upwards and two feet backwards. I could see the summit – perhaps 50 metres above me, but I had grave doubts whether I could reach it safely. The way down looked just as dangerous and it was unclear whether I’d be able to get safely across sideways to the North Ridge. In the end, I chickened out and made my way down the scree on my backside to a safe position.

I took the shot with a Lumix DMC-FX50 compact camera – EXIF data f/4.1, 10.3 mm 1/640 secs and ISO 100.

A fall from grace – or at least a fall

A Queen may have an annus horribilis, whereas Poppy – a mere council official – has had an hebdomas horribilis or really rotten week. Today, I tell of the week – or part of a week – suffered by Adam. You must judge who fared worse.

Poppy felt she had been lied to and treated as not worthy of a portrait. Adam knew that he bore the guilt of not making a New Year’s resolution to bin Mary’s portrait. He’d have saved himself the mental torture he was now suffering. Dumped again and no one to blame but himself. And what a prize he’d lost. No wonder he’d been so miserable at work.

Colleagues knew from when Mary had left him just how depressed he could get, so they rallied round and press-ganged him into joining them on a hill-walking jaunt the following Saturday. Remember – this was the day before Poppy’s birthday when she’s been cheesed off not to have received a card from him. From what she’d said to him, he’d felt that Happy Birthday greetings from him would have been less than welcome. He was miserable and feeling totally uncommitted to his mates’ discussion of route options.

In the end, they parked in the layby near Milestone Buttress  on the road between Capel Curig and Bethesda in Snowdonia. A great place to start an ascent of the North face of Tryfan – a peak that’s not uber high but is potentially lethal in poor conditions or for anyone poorly prepared or experienced. They didn’t bother with the traditional leap from Adam to Eve, the twin standing stones at the summit, but carried on down the South Face to Bwlch Tryfan – a gap between Tryfan and the slightly higher Glyder Fach.

All went well on the climb up Sinister Gulley to the start of the Ridge but they knew that The Great Pinnacle Gap might be a problem. I last met that feature six years ago. There’s a drop of perhaps four or five feet onto a smooth sheet of rock that descends for a couple of yards at about 30 to 40 degrees from the horizontal and ends at a deep cleft. I describe below how it seemed to me all those years ago – wet and slippery. I wasn’t prepared to take the risk. I’d read that if you descend to your right at that point you can reach a gap through which you can reach the far side of the cleft.  That’s what I did and what I describe Adam as doing  in a similar situation – leading his friends.

Traversing this lower gap requires four points of contact as I remember and describe it. You walk crabwise along a narrow ledge, facing the wall and clinging with your fingertips to a narrower ledge above. I remember feeling very exposed with a quite sheer drop behind me. When Adam tries it, the footing also is wet and slippery  and, part way along, his foot slides backwards and loses contact, swinging him around and tearing his hand from the ledge above. He is slammed into the rockface. His other hand loses contact with the ledge and he tumbles backwards, toppling head over heels for hundreds of feet and repeatedly smashing into the rockface as he falls before he lands, unconscious, in the valley below.

Can you call it a cliff-hanger if the hero fails to hang on? Will he make it to Poppy’s birthday party the next day do you think? Watch this page tomorrow for our next thrilling instalment.

The feature photo today is of Glyder Fach from the safety of Cwm Bochlwyd. The eagle-eyed among my readers may just spot the Great Pinnacle Gap quite near the top of the ridge (not the large scoop lower down) and the by-pass descent below it. I took this photo with a Panasonic Lumix compact DMC-TZ40 camera. The Exif Data are shutter speed 1/320 secs @f/4.7 aperture, focal length 10.3 mm and ISO 160.

A not so happy birthday.

That Adam! What a rotter! No wonder Poppy dumped him. I told you all about it yesterday. It isn’t the end of the story though – you’ll have to wait a day or so for that. In the meantime I have for you a tale of two unhappy people. Today, I’ll just tell one side of the story of the week that followed..

Poppy has flounced out of Adam’s house so, naturally she goes to her Mum and Dad’s house. She could have gone to her own home to be miserable but ‘a trouble shared is a trouble doubled’ as they say. She storms upstairs, calling Adam fit to burn and slams her bedroom door, leaving her Mum and Dad wondering what in blue blazes has led to this.

After a weekend of feeling sorry for herself and calling down curses upon Adam’s name, she decides to make a week of it and throws a sickie, thus, I assume, making life difficult for people at work too.

Come the weekend, her Mum, her Dad and her Sister all have a go at getting her to think straight. She complains that it’s her birthday the following day and he hasn’t sent her a card. Obviously, the fact that she’d told him that she never wanted to hear from him ever again, and had barred all his calls would have had nothing to do with that, would it? She agrees to come down for a meal and hardly touches her food but, eventually, she is persuaded by her Dad to text him the following day – her birthday if you remember.

So, she sends the text, but when he fails to answer it she’s furious. Sandra, her sister, suggests sending a WhatsApp message so she’ll know for certain whether he’s received it. It soon becomes clear that he hasn’t. Sandra, helpfully suggests that he may be in a Not Spot. Poppy takes that as confirmation that he’s swanned off somewhere remote to enjoy himself and forgotten her already.

Her parting message as she, once more, leaves the dinner table in tears of fury, is that he’s dead to her.

Oh dear! Tomorrow – what’s Adam actually been up to during this period?

Today’s featured photograph is of graffiti artwork in Liverpool that I photographed in May, 2019. I chose it for today because the beautiful woman depicted looks so wistful that she could be remembering disappointed love – like Poppy.

I took the shot handheld, using a Pentax K3-ii 24 MP cropped sensor camera and a 16-85 mm f/3.5-5.6 lens at 16 mm and f/11. The shutter speed was 1/100 secs and the ISO 100.