I recently celebrated a birthday. We drove into Geneva for a walk around the old town, stopping for hot chocolates and cakes here and there.

Before we left, a friend and neighbour rang the bell to drop off a lace-crocheted initial she had made for me, the letter B (for ‘birthday’, ‘beauty’, ‘blessings’, I assume).

Later in the day, another friend and neighbour (this time all the way from the next village, which is visible from our balcony), dropped off her magical carrot cake (world’s best cake of any flavour, we have now concluded), together with a bunch of roses, three of which had been used to decorate the cake. She handed them over with an apologetic explanation that she wasn’t great at writing cards.

We ate double servings of the cake that evening, after a dinner made by my husband, of some favourite dishes.

These are the magic moments of life and a wonderful day it was.

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