We went off on holiday at about this time and found on our return that Matt and Ruth had moved in, their move to Dulwich had stalled. They lived with us for several months until it all got back on track. I asked Matt who was moving him from storage to his new place and he explained it was me. He had borrowed a van and we were going to do it in that.
|ASIDE: We turned up at the storage unit he had rented in Bethnal Green and I was a tad surprised that, in this area particularly, there was just one wizened little old guy in charge of his belongings. But when we found the back doors of the borrowed van were wired up to keep them closed, the little guy stepped up. He shook his forearm and suddenly his empty hand had a wicked looking machete in it. It was sharp enough to cut through the wire as if it was cheese. A second flick of his arm and the machete was safely stowed up his sleeve again. Clearly their security was more than adequate.|
The very next evening I relaxed back into our now less-crowded lounge, not wishing them gone but relishing the calm uncrowded sense. At about 10pm the phone rang, it was a friend of Jane’s parents advising us that Jane’s Dad had collapsed and hinted it looked likely it would prove fatal. We hustled down to Eastbourne where they were having a pre-Christmas excursion and weekend with friends. Ivan had enjoyed a good meal and was dancing with Vi when he collapsed. A great painless way for him to go, but devastating for her. We took her back to ours, from where we arranged his funeral.
The funeral and a function for friends was held in Bristol and we travelled back to Fulham where we had a quiet dinner locally. During the dinner Ruth and Matt advised us that they were having their first child (apparently Jane had already known this) and Sarah and Laurent announced they were to be married. So, we had attended a despatch and now had news of a hatch and a match all on the very same day.
|Despatch – Jane with her father|
Ivanhoe Wilfred Allen