Back in the summer of 1998, in a leaving card from my then job as Programme Administrator for one of Oxford University’s summer course’s, fellow temp, Emma Golley wrote: Keep smiling and making jam! Since then I have always vowed that amongst a plethora of other dedicatees my first novel will be inscribed thus, ‘and Emma, I kept smiling and making jam. It’s a motto that I think nicely sums up me, and my personality. Nothing can really get me down. No matter how much rejection I face, I keep going. It makes me happy.

It’s kind of ironic then, that, tonight, with the preserving pan is boiling away, and the sweet smell of strawberries envelope the air, someone whom I once considered a friend – a good friend – in these pages; someone who I have met in person on more than one occasion and who has been part of some of the most tightly locked filters here, has *defriended* me; has called me an *idiot* and a *twat* and that she *doesn’t want to be my friend anymore*. And all this (unless over a difference of oppinion (not even headedly-so) concerning the merits or not of the Live 8 and MAKEPOVERTYHISTORY campaigns.

This saddens me, as I thought we were good friends. It seems not. That said, if that’s the way that she feels; and that it has suddenly and without warning turned to petty name calling without so much as an explanation, then so be it. I’m not going to argue. If things work themselves again in the future, then yes, I am open to it, but until then… au revoir.

I shall continue to be the friend that I can to those that care and who understand me. I shall keep positive; keep writing; keep smiling and making jam.