Sunday, 27 December 2009


I went on holiday to Spain last Monday. After twelve fun-filled hours at Gatwick I returned home again. Trouble was as I’d left, the builders had moved in and so I got back to a flat filled with dust and destruction.

I had to break into my own bedroom which I’d sealed up against the onslaught only to leave again at 2 a.m. on Wednesday morning to travel back to the airport where the big silver bird finally decided its wheels were able to navigate the two centimetres of fresh slush and so it took to the skies.

When I landed at Malaga, it was raining so hard I thought I’d best rent an ark rather than a car. The thunder and lightning were so severe, I expected G-d’s voice to boom down from on high telling us all The End Was Nigh.

It rained for four days and four nights. I hardly left my apartment. Sunday morning dawned bright and clear just in time for me to return to the airport to collect my children who are now staying with me, effectively ending the holiday that never got started in the first place!

Add to the above the long-awaited translation into Spanish of my first novel for my editorial perusal, and you've got a whole heap of hard work to throw into the equation.

The translator has told the story but removed the spirit with which I am wont to write. She was too lazy to utilise synonyms and so I counted forty-eight uses of the word ‘enormous’ in the text as well as many other repeats, something I always try very hard not to do. What about ‘big, great, large, massive, colossal, huge, monumental, gynormous, humungous'?

Consequently, I am now obliged to go through the book word for word to ensure it sounds right. Luckily - or not - I speak Spanish and my sister has helped. Had it been in Swedish, it would have gone to the publishers as an ‘enormous’ly bad edit and I’d never have known. . .

The ‘suitable’ older man I spoke about recently has blotted his copybook so many times that his days are seriously numbered.

What is his crime? I hear you ask. Being way too keen, I hasten to answer.

His texting, literally morning, noon and night is driving me nuts and boring me to tears. I’ve resorted to being rude in return – no actually, I’m being honest:

He texted to say he’d been to the gym and now had the body of a 20-year old.

I replied that I actually did have the body (and the head) of a 20-year old tied to my bed in London awaiting my return. That’s one way of holding onto your youth!

As for Mr. Suitable . . . the meaner I am, the keener he becomes!

Why is it always the troggy ones who want you truly, madly and deeply?

Sunday, 13 December 2009


I can actually feel my late mother pushing me towards him. I can actually see my girlfriends nodding their heads enthusiastically and giving me the thumbs-up. I can actually hear my children sighing with relief and saying: “About time – thank God she’s finally come to her senses!”

And yet . . . and yet . . . I don’t know, I just don’t know. You see . . . the problem is . . . (don’t all faint at once!) I’ve. Met. A. Suitable. Man.

What’s suitable? I hear you ask.

He’s the right class, status, religion and demographic.
A bit short but taller than me.
Not bad looking.
Good head of hair.
Decent teeth from what I could see.
Gentlemanly, as in opening doors and walking on the side of the road the carriages splash mud over.
Well turned-out and presentable.
Nice car.
Booked a great restaurant for lunch.
Interesting enough to talk to.
Recently widowed so very different to a divorcé.
Didn’t hog the conversation boasting about his past achievements and general prowess.
Very keen to see me again asap.

So what’s the problem? I hear you ask again.

The problem is that I’m not yet ‘half way sensible’. Because if I was ‘half way sensible’, I’d leap on him like a hungry lion and cling to him till death do us part. Because, as I understand it, in the eyes of society, at 63¾, with probably no more than ten good years left, I should be looking to settle down with someone with whom I can enjoy the twilight of my life and go gentle into that good night.

Bollocks! says I. As long as I’m still getting messages on toyboywarehouse. com from 21-year olds (yes! 5 minutes ago!) saying I’m hot and gorgeous and when can we meet for a drink? why on earth would I want to hang up my boots and settle down with a 63-year old?

This is not a trick question, but I could really use some good advice.


Sunday, 6 December 2009


It’s been a bit of a wild weekend. No, not like that . . . it’s just that I’ve been followed around by three different film crews. I mean honestly, what’s a girl to do? No film crews for simply ages, then just like buses, three come along all at once!

My inner Media Whore rose to the occasion with the usual aplomb, posing and preening for the cameras, trawling out my much-told tales, trying to find a new slant on the way I relate the fact that I enjoy the company of younger men.

If only they would ask me different questions, I’d be able to give them different answers . . .

It all began on Friday afternoon with an insightful interview with the delightful Jo Good for the BBC1 series 'Inside Out' to be aired on Valentine’s Day.

This was swiftly followed on Saturday by ze French TV peeple, marching into my apartment like Napoleon's army, rifling through my wardrobe, picking out what they thought I ought to wear, moving my furniture around and directing me to tell zem exactly what it eez zat I like about ze boyztoyz.

They filmed me in the (disrupted) comfort of my own home then took me hostage and made me drive them to the Toyboy Warehouse Xmas Party (Zut alors! Quel chore!) where they continued their interrogation while I tried to act normal and work my way through a whole gaggle of gorgeous guys.

Another crew were already filming there and it seemed greedy to hog them as well, so I didn’t, but then Auntie Beeb turned up again and we had to continue what we’d started in the Ladies Room as the party was so crowded and noisy by that time, I couldn’t hear myself flirt.

I’d be lying if I said I don’t enjoy the media spotlight. Something inside me opens up like a flower when the cameras start to roll and I feel myself growing and glowing. It’s probably a bit late to find one's preferred milieu at the age of 63, but I guess it’s better to find it late than not find it at all.

Now I have to work hard on keeping that spotlight shining. Plans are afoot. Watch this space. . .