I wake to a creak on the landing before dawn.
She is standing there.
I don’t know where I am she says.
We go downstairs for tea.
What is your name? She says.
I tell her. I’m Fiona.
That’s interesting, she says, that’s my daughter’s name.
We have tea, and Rich Tea biscuits.
She tells me about her life, her time in the far east, her husband being in the army.
At times I know the timeline is off but I don’t correct. I play the part of a polite stranger. Asking about details and nodding as she tells me familiar stories about her mother working in the bakery and her dad’s time in the catering corps.
I ask if she has family and she tells me about nephews and nieces.
She says that life is unexpected.
But she has no regrets.