24 February

From GDP/1 AM

AM was born in 1937 and grew up in Cumbria. She kept a detailed diary during her teenage years and her early twenties, covering her final years at school, and her first job doing secretarial work in Edinburgh.

Sunday 24 February 1957

After lunch to-day, when Miss Rose’s [the diarist’s landlady] friend phoned to ask if she was in, I went into her room. A thrill of fear ran through me + something without me told me she was dead. Just lying there, so still that one could not breathe for fear of breaking the silence. I ran for ER + she confirmed she was dead. So I had to move out of the house and back to R’s [the diarist’s boyfriend]. What a mess all my things are in. Later on, when it had been established that she died about breakfast time, I remembered how I awoke at 9 – much earlier than usual – + I wondered if the presence of death in the house could have lightly touched me in some indefinable way.