My mother, Joan Friend is a truly amazing woman. Of all the words that come to mind, the most fitting is "admirable".
At 82, she is still totally with us, in every sense of the word. Talking to her, it is very hard to realize she is 82 - it is just like talking to a young person. Which she is, at least in her mind.
She has always been extraordinarily quick mentally. She tries to tell us that she has slowed down, that she is not as good as she was. All I can say, as someone who has known her for over fifty years, is that I can't see it.
Sixty, yes sixty years after making a trip to Europe in 1938 as a young woman (really a girl) of 23, she typed her memories of the trip, still typing on some little typewriter. (No fancy word processors or PC programs for Mum)
Europe in 1938 through the eyes of a 23 year old girl is something special. Enjoy it.
In 1946, with the memories very fresh, she wrote her impressions of the wartime years, with her husband leaving her, 26 years old, with a three-month-old baby. We can all learn about the real Joan, and about ourselves, as we read this.