One of the most important lessons I have learned when trying to write is that the support from friends is hugely important. Without them, everything seems pointless. Today, I lost one of those friends. It's probably a little soon to be writing this post with the pain of his loss still so raw but I can think of no other fitting tribute to Les than writing about him. Les Moriarty was one of the first online bookish friends I ever met. After chatting online for some time we eventually met up at The Festival of Romance in 2013. At that event, a group of us became really firm friends and have been meeting up regularly. Unfortunately, I missed the last meet up back in September and never got to spend time with my lovely friend one last time.
Les was one of those people who was generous to a fault. He was always giving his time to offer words of support and encouragement or to tell you the sensible stuff you didn't always want to hear but needed to. Each time I came to London he always met me either at the airport or on the Tube because he knew I had absolutely no sense of direction and could have ended up anywhere! The man had the patience of a saint! Les and his wonderful wife Viv even let me doss on their sofa during a visit to London and their hospitality was second to none. His faithful dog Rosa was always by his side.
Les was an easy person to like. As someone has just reminded me, Les loved music. He had a vast knowledge about bands, singers and songs and would often share his music with his friends. My daughter often received cds through the post from Les as he knew she loved to dance and sing to the latest pop sensation. He knew how much my husband loved The Beatles and sent him some Beatles stuff too. So generous. He loved to cook and often derailed a diet or two when he posted up pictures of his latest culinary masterpiece. And, always thinking of others, he sent me lots of vegetarian recipes he thought I might like. With a wicked sense of humour, Les loved nothing more than getting together with friends and setting the world to rights over a glass of wine. I remember when we were all in Leighton Buzzard and spent the entire day in coffee shops talking all things bookish. He was such a well read man and there was nothing he didn't know. There are so many wonderful memories I have of Les and most of them involve laughing our heads off. He was a truly fascinating man and knew everyone! And, the whole world knew Les and adored him!
Quite often I have lacked the motivation or confidence to carry on writing. Les was always there to give me a kick up the backside and tell me to get on with it. Thank you for that Les. It's going to be tough without you my dear friend. The world is a little bit darker, colder and sadder without you in it. We are all better people for having known you. Thanks for the memories Les. RIP. xxx