I’ve been writing this post in my head for the last 10 days now, and it hasn’t got any easier…so much of me wants to rant about the unfairness of life and the tragic loss of my darling friend…but then, that’s not how Selma lived her life, and she was the one battling cancer. She lived her life to the full, she didn’t want to be defined by being ill, so it’s not my job to do that on her behalf. It’s my job to take the lessons she taught me, through her strength and courage, and live by them.
We didn’t focus on her illness when she was here, so I’m not going to do that now that she’s gone. I will put my anger aside and celebrate knowing this wonderful lady; I’m not saying I won’t be crying as I write this, I can’t stop the tears, they just keep coming, but I may also smile through them as I recall the fun we had.
I don’t really recall a time since I started my blog that I didn’t converse with Selma, she was there pretty much from the beginning. Funnily enough she found my blog via a recipe for a meringue cake – if you know me and my food, you’ll know how alien this is – and our communication built up from that point.
Like so many of you have said, I was the lucky one, I got to meet her, on several occasions, and I cherish that and all of those memories. I remember the first time I saw her, walking down the road towards me, I think we started talking then and never really stopped…except to eat great food – only after we had photographed it of course!!!
Many of you have read about our outings before: visiting Borough Market, the Good Food Show and Shepherds Bush, and more recently, Selma’s visit to my home. I loved that so much, she met Bob, I got to share some of my food with her, we pottered round some vintage shops together..it was a lovely lovely day that I am extremely grateful for.
I have learnt so much from Selma, she was a great font of knowledge, and if she didn’t know something, she was a brilliant researcher. I picked her brain on all sorts of subjects but, of course, mainly food based things. We talked and texted on a regular basis and I’m missing seeing her name coming up on my phone.
It was Selma that sparked my current habit of making ready by hand daily. She sent me some dried sourdough starter, granddaughter of Celia’s starter Priscilla and daughter of Selma’s starter Twinkle. She furnished me with complete succinct instructions but still had to coach me through my nerves!!!! And it worked perfectly, I baked my first ever sourdough loaf and loved it! I’ve been making bread for the household daily as a result, sometimes using the same sourdough starter, sometimes with fresh yeast.
I’ve loved and do love every one of Selma’s blogs posts, I loved her chat as well as her food, telling us all about her beautiful boy, Jake, and I have created a list of her recipes that I will be making. I urge you to have a good look round and save some recipes to make; do check out her most recent posts too as the recipes are not listed in the index yet. And read about Selma and her life in her words. And check out her page full of accolades, she really was a brilliant cook – even if she didn’t know it!!
Right now I am focussing on being grateful for knowing such a lovely lady, rather than focussing on her loss. I hope she would love what we are doing at Fiesta Friday for her (she was the one that introduced me to Angie and then FF after all) and that we can party and celebrate our blog sister. I know Selma has been in touch with so many of you and that she has created great friendships with so many of our blog community, we will all miss seeing her at our weekly blog party and visiting our blogs. She was such a supportive, encouraging and kind lady, she was definitely one in a million. I will miss her comments on my bog as well as our interaction in person and on every social media platform we shared, but I also love that she is still alive through all of these sites, that we can still see her 🙂
We don’t start our blogs expecting to make special friends so when it happens, it is a wonderful surprise and such a gift. Over the past week and a half, the love and support that has been shared between so many of us has made my heart want to burst.
This is what Selma has given us, the wonderful gift of love and sharing xx