This is a letter of gratitude to four people whose names I do not know and therefore cannot thank in person. These four young people quite spontaneously helped me out of a situation, in dangerously cold weather, which could have turned out to be very problematical indeed.
Unadvisedly, I had attempted to drive home from Marlborough on Friday, March 2, in freezing weather, ice and snow – when motorists had previously been warned not to venture out.
Ironically, I had gone shopping to buy some ice. In order to get home, my car had to climb up a long and steep road called Granham Hill, which leads almost to Martinsell Hill which is the second highest hill in Wiltshire and, having failed this task twice the day before, I was determined to succeed this time.
And so, against my better judgment, I set off. There was no one else in sight at the foot of the hill, so muttering words of encouragement to myself, I crawled further and further upwards until the car clunked to a halt, not very far from the top, with a cry of ‘Malfunction’.
My car is white and, although I was tucked into the side of the road, I was on a left-hand bend and quite difficult to see. At that point, I felt the first signs of helplessness. Then, suddenly, I saw four young faces looking at me through the hedge and when one of them asked if I wanted any help I said ‘Yes please’.
And so began the pushing from behind, the instructions to steer into the existing tracks and the placing of the floor mats beneath the wheels. But the crowning moment was when a young girl disappeared, running, up to the top of the hill and returned with every pocket of her clothes filled with grit which she threw under the front wheels.
Suddenly, the car found its feet and off it went. And, too late, I realised that I had left my benefactors behind and they were out of sight – before I could thank them.
So, thank you to all of you – so very, very much. Without you, who knows where I would be now?