Me and Maria, my sister, have never been particularly close, in fact you could say we’re the proverbial chalk and cheese, but since I had my stroke back in February, she’s been absolutely marvellous, I don’t know what I’d have done without her.

She’s always been an organiser, but she’s excelled herself. I can’t use my right hand and my walking with a stick is a tad uncertain, which means I can’t heave the coal in any more. So she’s organised quotes for gas central heating, sorted out the road closure so the gas guys could bring the gas into my house, got the forms from the council to apply for bars around the house generally, and in the loo, in particular.

She’s taken my washing home from the care home I’m in and brought it back all bright and shiny. Got me the bits and bobs that a woman regards as essential, applied for grants, and generally made herself indispensable.

So thank you, Maria, from the bottom of my heart.