Writing the Long Way Around

Currently listening to…

…and absolutely loving Hanya Yanagihara


Overheard at the Book Festival

I don’t have a problem attending events on my own. I go for dinner, to the theatre,  to the cinema, on holidays and of course to the book festival all by myself and just for myself. Sometimes it is lonely, but every time it provides the perfect opportunity to people watch.

“She’s got her trousers on back to front.”

“No, I think that’s how they are meant to be.”

“I hate them.”


“Now: what colour is your ear wax?”

“Well…I’d have to say golden.”

“Correct. That’s because you are European. If you were American it would be grey… and I think flaky.”


“….and then I am writing a book about my aunt….”

“…and I said to them something from Amsterdam? Well I would like a Renoir and a Van Gogh. Oh we did laugh, but really I’m not expecting anything…”


“Last year their afternoon tea was £6.50, this year it’s £13.00! They just fleece you during August. And I refuse to buy books from the festival because they won’t let me use my Waterstones card.”

“I can’t remember the name of that guy but fuck me; he is super intelligent! Like FUCK OFF intelligent.”




Dinner Parties Through The Ages

In your twenties when you throw a dinner party you make pasta. I once served garlic bread which I  put straight in the oven without removing the cellophane wrapper and nearly poisoned everyone. In your thirties you do something vaguely interesting with chicken, but you get so drunk before you start cooking that everyone ends up with takeout. In your forties, you buy ready meals from Waitrose, and lots of jolly decent wine so people don’t realise you still can’t cook.

The Honour of Russian Seamen

At the old Leith Academy in Edinburgh, which is being converted into apartments, students had to walk round the corridors in one direction. God alone could help you if they caught you walking in the wrong direction.

The ladies adviser made girls stand with their hands out palms up, and if she could see the underneath of any nails, Continue reading “The Honour of Russian Seamen”

i, Note

Tidying up on my phone I realised I haven’t used the Note function for about 16 months. I have phone numbers for a Lorraine, a Jason and a Norman. Who the hell is Norman? There are the vital statistics of my godson, including his full name, date of birth and a reading list. 16 months ago he was reading HP and the Chamber of Secrets, and his brother was into Continue reading “i, Note”

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