Just a normal life ………

Outside of work Corrinne enjoyed a normal life. She was never one to sit around and do nothing, she always liked to be doing something. She enjoyed spending time with others, but perhaps even more so enjoyed alone time, where she had no pressures or worries.

Those of you that know Corrinne, will know that cleanliness was taken beyond an obsession to a completely new level, The house was always spotless with the smells of fragrances and bleach everywhere. Somehow, even washing up turned from a ten minute job into a military exercise lasting a couple of hours, with no spec of dust safe from being obliterated.

I can assure you that every time a new cleaning product was advertised on the television, by the end of the next weekly shopping excursion there was an identical item in our house. It just didn’t seem fair that after working all day, she would come home and be on her feet, finding things to do until about 9pm every evening. We would all constantly beg her just to sit down! But, there would always be just one more thing to do.

Corrinne’s “down time” came when as soon as she walked through the door, after work. She would get home before her children returned from school. The first thing was always to make a cup of tea, and put the radio on. On days when the weather was fine, there was nothing she liked more than to take our Cocker Spaniel, Rio out for a walk. This was her escape, walking around the farmland and country paths at the back of Peacehaven, more often than not with her ipod for company enjoying the fresh air.

The introduction of Rio to our home was a surprise to many. Corrinne had always told her children that she was allergic to dog hair, and that she couldn’t have one in the house. Of course we all knew it was her obsessive cleaning that was the bigger issue. Rio had a gorgeous long haired golden coat of hair which was for ever moulting. We were often reminded of this with the hoover constantly on, at the merest hint of a dog hair. This formed the basis of a love/hate relationship she had for Rio. To us, she made out he was a nightmare, didn’t like him, hated all the dog hairs etc.. In reality, it couldn’t of been further from the truth, a loving constant companion who would adored each other and shared those magical walks together.

I wouldn’t class Corrinne as obsessed with the gym. In fact she actually hated being in a gym environment. What she really enjoyed was being a member of the gym and having access to all the extra classes that were laid on. At least three times a week she would go and do some form of physical activity. She has always looked after herself, through her diet and physical activity. The classes she really liked were her Step classes and her Spin classes, she would go to these weekly with her sister. Whilst at the gym she became good friends with many of the other regulars.

If for any reason the girls were unable to get in to any of the classes, for whatever reason, a good long dog walk was always a popular alternative. Corrinne did use the gym occasionally, but with the introduction of new hi-tech equipment, she really couldn’t be fussed with all that. I think we can safely say she was a technophobe.

This was also proven with her mobile phones. I always made sure that she had the latest technology, same as I did as we tried to encourage her to use it. Both myself and her children spent many an hour showing her how to use her phone. How she could use the apps that everyone else was using but it really did fall on deaf ears. As long as she could make a call, if she needed to or be contacted by voice or text if there was a problem. I can honestly say you would get a speedier response sending her a letter, than a text. The phone was often in the bottom of her bag, on silent or out of battery, and that was if she remembered to pick it up.

Television was not a major part of Corrinne’s life. She could easily manage without it. She would drift in and out of the soap operas, watch a little bit of sport, she wasn’t one for reality tv, except for I’m a Celebrity, which she absolutely loved. However, whenever she was alone watching the television there was always one type of programme that you could guarantee she would gravitate towards, Documentaries about killers, life in prison and murder cases…. I often thought, should I be worried?

Corrinne didn’t really have any vices that she spent her money on. She would prefer to pamper herself with hair, nail treatments, facials or even a little therapeutic shopping excursion. It was never lavish, always just enough to be a tonic and give a feel good factor.

As we both worked hard, we always made sure that we had two good holidays every year. We loved travelling and exploring. We would never go back to the same place again, we might go to the same country but it would be a different region. We owned a couple of weeks timeshare in the Lake District, which was one of our favourite retreats for relaxation, we would go there every two or three years, alternating it with swapping our apartment for one abroad. We have seen many different places, but one country that was extremely popular with us was Turkey

We had so many places that we wanted to visit, together. Now they will be locked away as part of our dream. I do have one regret about holidays. It was always Corrinne’s dream to go to Graceland, I promised her I would take her there. It would of been our next “Big” trip after Australia. I almost booked it for her 50th birthday, eventually deciding on taking her to New York instead.

Music has always been a massive part of Corrinne’s life. The house would be filled with various genres playing more often than not quite loudly, I guess they had to be to drown the hoover out! I honestly couldn’t begin to tell you how many CD’s that we have. I could guarantee a new one each week, tucked in with the shopping. She loved all type’s of music from heavy metal to soft ballads, although most opera she found boring!

Our love for live music meant that over the years, we had been to many concerts. We had seen some of the biggest acts in the world, as well as some lesser known ones at venues of varying sizes. One act in particular was Corrinne’s favourite, Bryan Adams. I think at last count we had seen him 9 times. It was her “go to music”, Summer of ’69 would definitely reverberate around the house at full volume. Naturally she walked down the isle on our wedding day to possibly his greatest hit “I will always love you”.

The other big passion that we shared was our love of football, after all it was football that brought us together. I’m not going to go into much detail about her “other team”, the dirty scousers, as I have always called them, Liverpool. I just turned a blind eye to that one, after all her mother was to blame for that!

When Brighton were building their new stadium and begun selling season tickets, I naturally got mine. Corrinne didn’t seem that interested, it would clash with other commitments etc. However, in the week leading up to the first home game at The Amex she became quite disappointed that she wasn’t going. It was a sell out, no tickets left and nothing I could do. Except, one of my pupils had just split from her boyfriend, they both had season tickets and didn’t want to sit next to one another. I jumped at the chance of buying her season ticket off of her, for Corrinne. Although we were in the same stand, we were a couple of blocks and a few rows apart. Didn’t matter, I could settle her in her seat and she could see the games.

As soon as the new Upper tier in the East Stand was ready for use, once again I called on one of my contacts and arranged for our tickets to be moved together in a prime location in the new stand. We made loads of friends around us, especially when we took Sonny, her grandson with us.

Our Saturday’s at football were a special time together for us. I used to do a few away games, but I only took Corrinne to three with me, one being to Anfield, to see Brighton play Liverpool!

Here, I have tried to show how full and varied her lifestyle was. I will detail later how each of these changed over time….

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