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The postmistress looked as surprised as if I'd announced that I wanted to work as a lap dancer, but I was duly interviewed in Truro and, to my astonishment, was offered the job.
It took time to persuade Ben, but eventually we sold our house in London and bought a dilapidated property in a village near Morranport, planning to make our living by running pottery-painting courses for children.After 20 years with The Body Shop, I brought in an executive salary and Ben, an out-of-work actor, was doing a brilliant job as house-husband.The downside was that we lived in a faceless commuter suburb in a house that seemed less a home than a hotel, where I crashed out after incredibly long days at work.As for my sweatshirt, it was a fast-disappearing pink blob, too far away to retrieve, and I hadn't been wearing a bra. Tying the belt from my jeans around my waist, I hung ribbons of green seaweed from it so they reached my knees, hiding enough of my lower half to prevent my immediate disgrace.Next, I flung my jeans across my shoulders, so that one leg was draped modestly across each breast, tucking the flapping bottoms into my belt.As a watching crowd gathered on the sea wall, a young lad fishing nearby threw me his net and I made repeated stabs at the elusive envelope, a crescendo of groans from my audience greeting every failed attempt.
Finally, however, a wave crashed in and left it stranded high, but unfortunately not dry, on the rock behind me.
Meanwhile, the letter which I'd saved was drying on a radiator.
It turned out to be junk mail, an advertisement for loft insulation. 'It was a brave, if foolhardy, thing to do.' Archie echoed the bravery line. How had I gone from my glitzy life to driving a red Royal Mail van in Cornwall?
'We'll write to the post office, commending your integrity and sense of duty,' he said. In London, it had seemed my husband Ben and I had everything.
'They should be proud to have women like you working for the Royal Mail.' I don't know about 'proud', but my colleagues were certainly surprised to find me working alongside them. We were in love and we had two gorgeous children, Will, six, and four-year-old Amy.
In my former life, my clothes had been smart and stylish, my hairstyle trendy and my skin pampered with cosmetics from The Body Shop, the company for which I'd been UK Marketing Manager.