Kind friends recently sent me a museum-quality print of a photograph of Hilary that was taken when she was twenty-three, years before we met. It shows a young woman who was fearless and angry and full of life. We had no idea that the two of us would meet a quarter-century later and change each other’s lives forevermore. I haven’t decided where to hang it, but when I do so, I will give it a prominent place in the apartment that the two of us shared so happily until she went into the hospital last December, never again to leave.Shortly after Hilary died, I wrote in a single sitting an essay about her called “My Gallant Gal” that has just been published in Commentary. For those of you not fortunate enough to have met her, it may give you a clearer idea of what the “Mrs. T” of this blog was like in real life. It comforts me to have been able to put some of her singular qualities on paper. The results are inescapably inadequate but, I hope, heartfelt and suggestive all the same. You can read “My Gallant Gal” by going here.
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Frank Sinatra sings Hoagy Carmichael’s “I Get Along Without You Very Well” in London in 1970. The orchestral arrangement is by Nelson Riddle: