I was in the chemist’s and this happened.

I saw an old witch. I was staring at this old creature and thought, a witch. Here she was, beside me. A tiny bent-over woman, with a nose nearly meeting her chin, in black heavy dusty clothes, and something not far off a bonnet. She saw me looking at her and thrust at me a prescription and said, ‘What is this? You get it for me.’ Fierce blue eyes, under grey craggy brows, but there was something wonderfully sweet in them.

I liked her, for some reason, from that moment. I took the paper and knew I was taking much more than that. ‘I will,’ I said. ‘But why? Isn’t he being nice to you?’ Joking: and she at once responded, shaking her old head vigorously.


Under Another Name
A Wedding