Kindness of strangers

So what’s the best thing to do the next night after going to the James Bond premiere?

Go to see the film again?

Yes, 24 hours after watching Skyfall at the Royal Albert Hall, I was at the cinema for more 007 action!

It was thanks to my friend Rache. When not organising fancy dress themed nights out, she loves to enter competitions. She’s very good at winning and has bagged some incredible prizes.

Rache, me and Barbarella

For months Rache had been trying to win tickets for the Skyfall premiere for me. She wasn’t alone in doing this.

She’s part of an online forum for fellow compers. Many of them also did what they could by entering quizzes and competitions for me. These were people I’d never met before, they only knew me from this blog, yet they put in lots of effort into doing something lovely for me.

And they came up trumps!

A man who goes by the online name of Greatbigrobot won tickets to a VIP advanced screening of the movie for me the night after the premiere. I was delighted. Then a couple of days later the charity, the Willow Foundation managed to get me invited to the premiere.

The tickets for the advanced screening were non-transferable so I ended up with a double dose of 007.  Well, you can never have too much Bond in your life.

Anna, Bond girl for the night

My friend Anna came with me to the advance screening. It was a really great night and another fabulous excuse to wear Candice and a posh dress. You wait for months for something like this to come along and then you have two big nights out in a row. Not that I’m complaining.

Before the film we were served champagne by handsome waiters, played roulette and met men in tuxedos. Surely this is what it must be like to be a Bond girl?!

Although I don’t imagine that Bond girls normally drink champagne from plastic glasses.

Watch out Daniel Craig!

I was really touched that someone won the prize for me. But this wasn’t the first random act of kindness. Since being diagnosed, people that I don’t know have sent me presents.

When I went into hospital I received a care package which included tissues for tears and a notebook for ideas. During chemo I received a handbag in the post to help me look forward to happier times. Just a few days ago a Twitter friend sent me a teal green hat and earrings. Her gifts were to help make my bald look better and feel warmer.

I’ve also had cards from people who explain that we’ve not met but they know me through someone.

I’ve had so much love on Twitter too and from everyone that’s left comments on this blog.

Of course, the support I’ve had from family and friends has been wonderful but I didn’t expect so much good will from strangers. Knowing that lots of people, including many I’ve not met in real life, are cheering you on is an incredible feeling. It always gives me a boost and has been more help than I could have imagined.

So, thank you.

Never for a second would I have chosen to have cancer. It may be the worst of times but it’s also shown me the best of so many people.