LIZ JONES’S DIARY: Where my weekend loses its bubble
My friend Andrea from Belfast came to stay with me for the weekend. At the airport, she texted, “What’s your favorite brand of champagne? I know you’re very picky.”
I replied, ‘Andrea. I’m engaged to a man who doesn’t have a teaspoon. Everything will be fine.’
It was so nice to spend a few days with someone normal, that is, not a man. She helped with the horses and took Mini many special walks, although Missy didn’t want to: ‘It was so funny, she got to the end of the path leading to the abbey and just stopped. Then we walked back and she wanted to go in to see the stables. Then she wanted to go home. She had walked as much as she wanted! She’s a girl who knows her mind and I admire that.’
Andrea paid for dinner. She is so interesting and well traveled, we talked for hours. She appreciated the beauty of the place and continued to take pictures. She didn’t say at a dog walk, four seconds later, “That sounds suspiciously like a slope.”
Liz Jones describes her perfect weekend as her friend Andrea from Belfast came to visit before it was ruined when she opened her email inbox
But since it was a Sunday, I logged into my email and, as is the norm, it was full of people telling me.
First, the real estate agent in charge of the sale of my rented house said that it was not helpful for me to write about it online. Online! I’m not a blogger, I’m in a real, you know, physical magazine.
I replied that there’s more to being a landlord than taking rent to pay your mortgage, and that maybe heating was a good idea.
Then I got an email from David, who has been blocked so I have absolutely no idea why I can still see his emails (Nicola?! Siri?!).
He wrote: ‘Hello, I hope you understand this. I’m upset. It is disturbing to hear that you cannot wear the beautiful dress I bought for you. I don’t understand why it wasn’t exchanged for the right size at the time. Take it to a seamstress and have it fitted. Let me know the cost and I’ll be happy to pay. Love, David.’
Jesus H Christ. He’s clearly still listening to my podcast, in the latest issue of which I joked about what I should wear to a formal affair at Claridge’s. I had mentioned Dries van Noten’s dress with the gold inlay, which he had indeed bought for me, and I could have said it was ‘Maat Vet’.
It was just a wasted comment. A joke. More of an indictment of my own body – starving since I was 11, a breast reduction at 29 – than a criticism that he bought the wrong size.
The problem is that people can’t see beyond themselves. It’s as if the whole world is seen through a tiny porthole that lets them see only what’s on their minds, never the big picture.
He doesn’t think, well, she’s got a job, it’s not about me. And, Jesus, Liz bought me an N Peal vest with a contrast collar and I left it all ruined and littered with moth holes. Oh, and a gold (‘plated’, as he kindly pointed out) Dunhill lighter that I just lost in Plaza Athénée for being careless*. Let’s make these slide.
Maybe he thinks he’s helpful. Maybe he’s jealous that I moved on. Who knows? But why not just cheer me up with something funny, instead of whining about something “I bought you years ago”?
Anyway! Tomorrow I meet the Rock Star at the Talbot Inn, in the foodie capital of Yorkshire. He’s on his way to Scotland. I reserved a table in the bar, after warning the owner that I am vegan and will have four collies with me, two of whom are incontinent. I hope he booked a room…
*At the time he blamed me for rushing him while I was downstairs in a taxi