We’ve finished the box set of As Time Goes By and last night we began Carla Lane’s Butterflies. The marvellous Geoffrey Palmer is the common denominator. It takes me back. 1978 or thereabouts. You were sixteen, he said, and I was thirty-one. I forget the age-difference. That massive gap of both experience and wisdom. He has it in legions, I wobble. He massages my back. He is good at it now. I love to watch Wendy Craig. And the eldest boy, what a crush I had on him. Andrew Hall I believe he was called. He’s dead now, he said. Yes. Time passes. The sun shines again. Tesco’s was better this morning, not as bad as we feared. And still I have to hold back my instinct to amass. Don’t. It is only fear. Yes, but I am riddled with it. We snap at each other between the aisles. Not in public, he says and looks so cross. I don’t know what to do. Do I go ahead with it or postpone? Call him, he says. I will try. Will anyone respond? Is there anyone out there?

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.