Crudo: A Novel by Olivia Laing:
The next day, 31 August 2017, was Kathy’s husband’s birthday. Since it was the first time ever she had celebrated someone’s birthday as their wife she got up at 6:30 and went into the damp cold garden and cut him a pink dahlia, a lolly on a stick. She made tea and set out a tray, with his card, a deep-sea diver waving, and his present, profoundly expensive cashmere socks, far better than hers, which she sort of knew were a size too small. She opened his door just as he had silenced the radio and was pulling the duvet back over his head. A small animal, warm and breathy in its burrow. She climbed in beside him and cuddled up. His tea had to be made a very particular way, it involved several implements; hers was a bag. He was extremely excited by the tray. He was chief fusser in their lives, it was good for him to receive. The socks were too small but he held them to his cheek all the same. The diver was him, waving keenly. Hello! Hello! Help!