A beautiful day in Blackpool

Oh my, what a day. Where to start? It was magical, truly magical.

Roy’s plans went out the window (or rather up in the air) and the day just… unfolded itself. We went to the arcade, the beach, ate candyfloss, had our fortunes told. Then we danced in the Tower Ballroom. Writing it down, I still can’t believe it. But we did. We had our own organ, playing our own tune, and we danced, to no one else but ourselves.

I believe there’s someone up there or something out there. But even if there’s just us, as Roy says, being recycled back into the Universe - molecules from stars becoming stars again - I don’t mind. I hope I’m recycled back here in Blackpool. A grain of sand on the beach. Feeling someone’s toes paddling on me. Hope and Ruby, make sure you go paddling, and take Roy with you. He’s promised.

Roy's surprise trip

We are in Blackpool, my favourite place in the world! Roy surprised me, he’d packed and everything. I couldn’t believe it.

We’re staying in a beautiful hotel on the sea front. I can see the tower twinkling in the distance, and if I listen closely I can hear the waves. I can smell fish and chips and sea in the air, and it makes me want to laugh and jump up and down like a kid. Like I used to as a kid. Right here.

Roy won’t tell me what he’s got planned, but he’s packed my best dress and told me to get ready. He’s also packed pretty much everything I own including four nighties, a pair of wellies and a terrible two-piece I once wore to a wedding and didn’t have the heart to throw out. He said he wasn’t sure of a woman’s sartorial needs and wanted to cover every eventuality. What a lucky woman I am. I’m… I can’t describe it… giddy. That’s the word, giddy!

On the boating lake

Today we went to the boating lake where Roy and I shared our first kiss back on 6th July ‘98. It was raining back then and we couldn’t go out. This time the sun shone for us. Ironic.

It was wonderful out on that lake. I felt happier than I can remember, but also the saddest I’ve ever been. A paradox Roy said. Maybe that’s what life is. I wish it didn’t have to end just when I’m beginning to understand it.

Anyway, I said this wasn’t going to be a maudlin diary and it’s not. I’m off to put my glad rags on, we’re having a meal out at the same place Roy took me all those years ago. I’m going to wear my silk shirt and drink a lot of red wine. Maybe even half a bottle. That would definitely be a first.

Roy is behaving more strangely than normal. Just now I caught him standing in the kitchen, hugging a cushion, looking at it very oddly. I hope the stress isn’t getting to him.

Using chopsticks

Friday night and I’ve managed to use chopsticks for the first time in my life! I’ve tried before, but after two minutes of fumbling and sauce down my front, I always give up and use a fork.
This time, Roy gave a detailed demonstration plus six print out instructions with diagrams. If you’re reading this, I’m sorry I poked that chopstick in your chest, but I was just so frustrated. I’ve got nimble fingers, I sew fancy knickers for a living so why am I such a klutz at this? Thank you for bearing with me and suffering the pain with a smile. It was worth it in the end.

*Okay I got one mouthful in. Two minutes later I was back to the fork.

On a Harley Davison!

No, you’re not imagining things, that really is me on the back of a Harley Davison. I wasn’t allowed to ride it but they did let me rev the engine! I’ve wanted a go on one since I first saw the film Easy Rider. Roy calls it a metaphorical subversion of the American Dream, I call it a film about two sexy men on bikes grabbing life by the throat. I wish Peter Fonda’d been on this bike with me but you can’t have everything.

I did ask Roy if he wanted a go but he politely declined.

Photobooth fun

Tough day today. We went to the cancer support group. It wasn’t as bad as I expected. Met a woman called Jane who’s got a really positive attitude to it all. She’s practical too, made me think about where I want to end my days.

Realised we hadn’t really talked about this. Made me feel a bit scared.

I wanted to do something as daft as possible after all that cancer talk. So when we passed one of those photo booths on the way home, I dragged Roy in. I’ve always seen young couples do it but never done it myself. Roy said it was silly but I said I was in a silly mood.

I’m putting a few in here, but the last one’s going in my purse from now on. Just to remind me how lucky I am to have such a wonderful husband. Even if he doesn’t smile in photos.

Teaching Roy to drive

Took Roy for a driving lesson yesterday. He was a bag of nerves, even more than usual. I think he’s up to something and I can see it’s stressing him out. I shan’t ask what, but I cant help wondering…

Anyway, we managed to stall in the middle of a box junction. Roy got really flustered and this stupid driver behind started honking his horn and shouting. Well, I’m a bit tense at the moment too, so I got out and shouted right back. Have a bit of patience. Couldn’t he see the flipping L-plates? Roy was embarrassed, said I was making things worse, but you know what? I felt loads better after having a good old shout. I might have to try it more often.

I took this photo when we got back. I couldn’t get Roy to smile. His grim face says it all!

Our camping trip

Sunday evening and we’ve just got back from a surprise camping trip. I had no idea! Bless Roy I’ve never slept in a tent before (I know, daft isn’t it?), and I loved it. You feel so close to nature but so safe and secure. I said to Roy it’s a bit like being in a womb. He wasn’t convinced. We cooked beans on a stove and played German Whist (which I won), then snuggled up for a cosy night under the stars. Conquering the great outdoors. Tick!

Taking Roy for another driving lesson tomorrow. Not long until his test.

If you’ve been affected by cancer, like Hayley and Roy, the Macmillan Cancer Support team are here for you. Call 0808 808 00 00 or visit macmillan.org.uk