One of the recurring themes of this story is that, in many ways, I have been very lucky in my life. I have been to a lot of different places, seen a lot of different things and met some wonderful people. One of the ways that I count myself luckiest is that almost all of those wonderful people are still alive.
Sadly, I heard on Friday that Tim Boultwood had died a couple of years ago. It was very sudden, he fell ill on New Year’s Eve and was dead by the next day.
I didn’t know Tim that well, but for several years he and I would often be involved in the same cricket match. Tim was no cricketer, and he would’ve been the first to admit it. But he would turn out regularly for his company, Ward Consultancy Plc, in any number of games throughout the summer. Sometimes we would be on the same side, more often in opposition.
Tim always gave the impression that everything was great fun. Cricket may not have been his game, but he was a competitor and he had this great smile of embarrassment whenever he took a wicket – loving the success, but knowing that he really wasn’t the kind of bowler that any batsman should get out to.
I can see him now, standing in the sunlight at the end of his short curving run, his dark wavy hair turning grey, his white shirt rolled up to the sleeves in an old-fashioned sort of way, and his off-white chinos (he never did get around to buying proper cricket trousers). One of the world’s nice guys. I hadn’t seen him for years, and yet everywhere is a poorer place without him.