I had a different post planned to upload today but news this morning has made me change those plans. That one I'll post tomorrow. Today, for our household, the sad news is that the Reverend John Graham has passed away. There is a very high probability that you don't know who he is. I wouldn't know him under that name either. And I've been in correspondence with him.
I know him better, as do many others, simply as Araucaria.
He's been a part of our lives for many years. He's been on holiday with us. He's played a starring role in Nick's 40th birthday celebrations. He's seen us through hospital appointments. He is loved and cursed in equal measure at Christmas time and on bank holidays.
All because he sets the toughest cryptic crosswords for the Guardian newspaper.
He is so loved in our home, that I asked him to create a personal crossword for Nick on his 40th birthday. The finished puzzle, complete with answers, is signed and framed and is hanging up on our wall. It was back in the day where I could only arrange this through a series of letters and correspondence which I still have.
We knew he was ill and that this day was near.
Still, it is sad news for Guardian readers and crossword lovers alike.
I dedicate my post today to him.
R.I.P. Reverend John Graham (Araucaria). Thank you for all the joy and frustration you brought us. We will miss you.