Dorothy tossed the seed out onto the frosty grass.
‘You’ll attract rats,’ he used to grouch. She’d think to herself and smile: the biggest one’s indoors. I can handle the small ones out here.
She filled up the feeders with peanuts and seeds – she loved to watch the sparrows and blue tits but the ground scattering was for the woodpigeons. She’d made a Christmas wreath for the birds from pine cones rolled in lard and seed and she hung it on a branch of the bare tree. She was glad he wasn’t out here to see it. She could imagine how he would laugh at her.
Dorothy made a cup of tea and sat in her armchair overlooking the garden. It was a hive of activity. She remembered how Brian would sit in the chair next to her and how they would share a packet of custard creams. He’d been wild in his younger days but as he’d aged he’d become more sensitive, needy almost. It was worth the waiting. The later years she would cherish forever. Her kids said she saw him through rose-coloured glasses, but isn’t that what love is all about?