LIZ JONES’S DI­ARY

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IRETURNED HOME on Mon­day af­ter­noon to find a bou­quet of flow­ers on my doorstep. My heart sank. I hate peo­ple send­ing me flow­ers, es­pe­cially In­ter­flora ones with lilies and spiky leaves. I only like yel­low roses. And tulips. No green filler stuff or glit­ter. Send­ing me flow­ers cre­ates work: I have to un­wrap them, find scis­sors, snip off the ends, find a vase. I am then poised for days, des­per­ate to wash the vase and put it away, un­til they die. I got them in­side, then opened the teeny en­ve­lope. ‘Who,’ I won­dered, ‘has sent me more things to do?’

It was the day after Mother­ing Sun­day, but I am not a mum, ob­vi­ously, so the card per­plexed me. ‘Thank you for be­ing my new Mummy. Sorry these are late. Love, Missy.’

No name. Just a thank-you from my new res­cue bor­der col­lie three-year-old. The one thing I sim­ply can­not stand is peo­ple be­ing cryptic. Who could have sent them? Barely a soul knows my ad­dress. I con­sid­ered phon­ing my lo­cal florist to quiz them, but they were, of course, closed, it be­ing a week­day dur­ing of­fice hours. Could they be from my friend Helen, who stayed at Christ­mas? From Nic, Iso­bel, Dawn? I called In­ter­flora cus­tomer ser­vices, who said that due to data pro­tec­tion, they are not al­lowed to give out a name. Damn! I’m now even more an­noyed.

It’s the sort of cryptic, labour-in­ten­sive-on-my­part thing David would do but, as he had failed to send flow­ers on Valen­tine’s Day, to do so on Mother’s Day would be a bit creepy. I hadn’t heard from him, and started to won­der whether my last email, say­ing I was off soon to South Amer­ica for work, had mis­tak­enly made him jeal­ous, think­ing I was em­bark­ing on a ren­dezvous with the Hunk. So I emailed to re­as­sure him: ‘Hi. In case you thought I was meet­ing the war-re­port­ing, re­ally in­ter­est­ing, re­cently di­vorced Liam Nee­son looka­like, just to re­as­sure you I’m not. He doesn’t live in South Amer­ica, I was just pro­tect­ing his iden­tity. He re­ally lives in Xxxxxxx.’ He replied. ‘What about my iden­tity?!’ Good point. I knew he was go­ing to say that. ‘Un­for­tu­nately, you were al­ready named in my col­umn and book be­fore you con­tacted me and we re-met.’

Oooh! An email! David. ‘So, how is your hear­ing now? Is it ev­ery­thing you hoped for? X’

Me: ‘It’s amaz­ing. Still get­ting used to the new hear­ing aids but I can hear birds singing in the gar­den; I as­sumed they’d all been shot. I used to have the TV on 100, now I can hear per­fectly on 13. I’ve started lis­ten­ing to mu­sic again; God, how I’ve missed it! My iPhone goes straight into my ears. I can hear an­nounce­ments on the train. Traf­fic. Sirens. Peo­ple talk­ing in the street as they pass by. Shop as­sis­tants when they tell me how much some­thing is. Who knew there was an ex­trac­tor fan in my bath­room? Or a beep­ing noise to let me know Mini hasn’t put on her seat-belt? Or that Sweetie makes chirrup­ing noises? Just like that woman from the Daily Tele­graph who wrote a front-page piece say­ing I had snubbed her in the lo­cal pub in Som­er­set – she must have thought I was ig­nor­ing her! I am do­ing my first in­ter­view of a celebrity to­mor­row with ears.’

‘That is fan­tas­tic news. I am so happy for you. X’

Me: ‘So did you send me some flow­ers last week?’ (I’m sorry. I just have to know. It’s been driv­ing me in­sane; well, more in­sane than I usu­ally am.) Him: ‘No. Missy did. X’ Ah. So it was him who sent them! He can’t be ly­ing, as I hadn’t men­tioned the new puppy when I asked if it was him.

‘That was kind and thought­ful and not weird and creepy at all. Mini Puppy still hates her; I can now hear her growl­ing. What do the flow­ers mean? Any­thing? Noth­ing? More wash­ing-up?’

‘Naughty Mini. What do the flow­ers mean? I don’t know. I think of you. I miss you. X’

NO NAME. JUST A THANK-YOU FROM MY NEW RES­CUE BOR­DER COL­LIE. WHO COULD HAVE SENT THEM?’’

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