The generosity was not just of the 'spirit' variety. As it became evident that the national purse had its limitations (before, in fact), donations began to make their way to us, quickly removing any financial obstacle to the second implant. This has left us staggered - we never asked and yet you gave.
Although we have endeavoured to thank as many of you as would let us, we feel the need to let the world know and be reassured that human beings like to love and help each other given half a chance. So, the following all have shares in Tom's left ear and have nagging rights should he EVER fail to pay attention in school.
- Becky and all the tinytalk groups around the country who took part in the quiz.
- Those who saw East Midlands Today (Anne and Terry) and were touched by Tom's innate cuteness.
- Heidi and Zak and the guests at their wedding who took the option of not enlarging the couple's stock of china. You are such splendid, splendid people and it was a splendid, splendid wedding to boot - Tom was at his charming best throughout, even when telling everyone in the church to 'shussshh the baby's sleeping!!' at the top of his voice.
- Extended family members - aunts, uncles and cousins at various stages of removal - and close family friends who have been generous to a degree that leaves me floored.
- All Tom's grandparents and great grandparents - you are all too lovely for words. Your level of generosity has earned you all the right to be entertained by Tom throughout the school holidays and we will fix up a rota to ensure none of you miss out on your allotted weeks.
- The Vestry Convenor and congregation at St. Ninian's Church in Castle Douglas who gave the proceeds of the church's 15oth anniversary concert and to Balliol Consort who sang so beautifully I'm told (and kindly waived their fee).
There's an even longer list of neighbours, friends, relatives of friends and strangers who, in various ways, have given of themselves for Tom. So...Doreen and Patrick, with your constant supply of sweets, you're not helping us get Tom to eat his tea!