Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Cheesecake plant

It was nearly the end of the summer holidays, our sons were on a football course and we had the day to ourselves, so Anne and I decided to go out for lunch. In a dark little brasserie we laughed our way through a delicious two course meal. No-one seeing us could have guessed that Anne had Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and that her mouth and throat were covered with ulcers — a side-effect of her treatment.

Afterwards, with time to spare before collecting the boys, we visited a garden centre where we decided that, as we’d missed out on pudding, the best way to round off the afternoon would be to have a cup of coffee and a piece of blackcurrant cheesecake. There was a piece on display that looked large enough for 2 or 3 people — it turned out to be an individual portion. We felt embarrassed to have the slices on our plates but not too embarrassed to eat every last mouthful. In between more giggles.

Before leaving the store, just to prove there had been a legitimate reason to visit the garden centre, we each purchased a souvenir, an unusual little red and white plant that looked a bit like the cheesecake.

Four months later, on Christmas Eve, Anne died.

I was searching through some old photos the other day when I came across this picture of my plant. I don’t know its proper name but to me it will always be the ‘cheesecake’ plant.


Shirl said...

My friend's 85 year old Mum has just been diagnosed with this same disease. It has raised all kinds of questions about treatment and age in her family. Not least with her Mum who intends to ask: what if I don't have the chemotherapy? I know I am old enough to die. How will I be without the treatment?

Imagine being in that place.

Less seriously, you have a very happy memory of that day with Anne.

mutterings and meanderings said...

It's good that your memories of her are giggling over cheesecake. I bet she's pleased you remember her that way.

Linda said...

Thanks for stopping by. I'm in the USA, West Virginia. We had temperatures in the low 80's last week before the cold front moved in. This snow was so unusual I had to capture it on film (since it's digital, I guess on disk).

What a touching story of your cheesecake plant.

Copper said...

Its always good to remember with a smile liz...


Lee said...

That plant is called "Bleeding Heart" or by its botanical name, "Dicentra", Liz. I'm sorry to hear about your friend, but how wonderful that you have such a happy memory of her.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

That's a poignant but lovely story, Liz and I'm glad you have that memory of a good day out with your friend. That's a beautiful plant.
Strangely enough, a friend of mine in Britain has just been diagnosed with this disease too.

Liz said...

Cancer is a horrible disease, claiming far too many people far too young.

Thanks for your comments. I hope I will be remembered with a smile too.

Lee, we have a bleeding heart in the garden. It's just coming into bloom; I'll have to take a photo of that too. I didn't realise this was the same family but now you mention it ...

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