Immediately after breakfast I got out my bicycle and started for Forest Hill. It was one of the coldest days we have had and a strong wind in my face all the way. As a result, tho' it cannot have been much about freezing, I was dripping with heat by the time I arrived.
She [Aunt Lily] is in a cottage which I once went to see for us a long time ago. From the windows you look across fields to the ridge of Shotover — she did not know of its connection with Shelley and was glad to hear of it. There is a very pleasant kitchen sitting room.
She has been here for about three days and has snubbed a bookseller in Oxford, written to the local paper, crossed swords with the Vicar's wife, and started a quarrel with her landlord.
The adventure of the Vicar's wife was good. That lady, meeting her in the Forest Hill bus, asked who she was, and promised to call. Aunt Lily said she might call if she liked, but she wasn't going to church. Being asked why, she said she had vowed never to enter any church until the clergy as a body came out in defence of the Dogs Protection Bill. "Oh!" said the priest's wife in horrified amazement, "So you object to vivisection?" "I object to all infamies," replied Aunt L.
Nevertheless the Vicar and his wife came to her all humble at the journey's end and said "Even if you don't come to church, will you come to our whist drive?" She says all parsons look like scolded dogs when you challenge them on this subject.
I refused an invitation to lunch, but stayed till one o'clock. She talked all the time, with her usual even, interminable fluency, on a variety of subjects. Her conversation is like an old drawer, full both of rubbish and valuable things, but all thrown together in great disorder.
‘All My Road Before Me’
Harper Collins 1991