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Melissa Kite rss

Melissa Kite writes The Spectator’s Real life column.

Dreaming of Dexter Photo: Getty

Real life: My own personal stress test

25 May 2013

Are you stressed? Do you worry that your stress levels are not normal? Do you fret that your reactions to everyday situations are an indicator of your total inability to… Read more

Rodeo cowboy

Real life: the taming of a shrewish mare

18 May 2013

One of my favourite things to do is to visit the field where Tara, my bad-tempered chestnut hunter is retired because there, I know, I will find like-minded company. We… Read more

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Winning match at Stamford Bridge

11 May 2013

‘We hate Tottenham!’ If they had shouted it once they had shouted it 100 times. I wasn’t sure why, as we were watching Chelsea v. Basel. But I knew enough… Read more

Travellers Attend The Annual Appleby Horse Fair

Melissa Kite admits she asked for it

4 May 2013

Sometimes, the answer only becomes clear when you stop trying to work it out, and give in to the incongruity of things. I was buying some shopping at Sainsbury’s in… Read more

Kite

The tyranny of the cycle track

27 April 2013

If Joni Mitchell were writing her song ‘Big Yellow Taxi’ today, about the ruination of the natural world by the march of modernity, the lyrics might run something like this:… Read more

Illustration

Real life: Melissa's away and the mice will party

27 April 2013

Such a tiny creature would not be any trouble, I decided. And so I got the idea, at the beginning of the winter, that it might be all right to… Read more

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Real life

20 April 2013

Having diagnosed myself with diabetes, I demanded the doctor run a full set of blood tests. Just to confirm what I already knew, you understand. I was weak, dizzy, my… Read more

Real life: In praise of Balham

13 April 2013

As if by magic, a long-lost cousin will every so often appear. They come from the sticks and ask if they can stay in my south London flat. I always… Read more

Real life: I can’t fight this bureaucracy any more

6 April 2013

Eighteen months into my car injury battle with The Slobs, I slump over my kitchen table and throw my head into my hands. Through bitter tears, I email the ‘customer… Read more

‘Lieve looked like she wanted to run for her life before the AK-47 came out of Stefano’s trouser leg’

30 March 2013

Sadly, I was being over-optimistic when I declared that if all went well with the builder boyfriend I would never need Stefano the Albanian again. It turns out that  I… Read more

Real life

23 March 2013

My nerves were already shot to pieces when my phone rang and a faint little voice said, ‘Hallo, this is Vodafone, we’re just ringing to let you know we’ve got… Read more

Real life: Pain and floss

16 March 2013

‘Have you been flossing?’ The four most terrifying words in the English language. The dental hygienist peers down at me through her scary goggles and speaks in a strange, muffled… Read more

A stable full of Germans

9 March 2013

After a lot of false starts, I am now the proud occupant of a small weekend rental in the country. It is very exciting. No more commuting from Balham to… Read more

Beer Price Rise Threatens Pubs

Real life

2 March 2013

Two pedantic nerds should not be allowed to come together in a small space. In any case, the guy who runs quiz night at The Black Swan and I have… Read more

Real life

23 February 2013

The new rabbit is turning into a bit of a slob. The other day I caught her trying to order a takeaway. I had opened the rabbit enclosure to let… Read more

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Discovering a takeaway-ordering rabbit

16 February 2013

My ability to almost play the opening bars of Chopin’s Revolutionary Study may seem like a futile skill to have. But I never lost faith that it was going to… Read more

Real life

9 February 2013

Throwing oneself at the feet of the transport secretary at a posh lunch is not a dignified thing to do. I realise that. But since my parents found out that… Read more

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Does the RSPCA think it’s the FBI?

2 February 2013

Imagine what would happen if J. Edgar Hoover, founder of the FBI, were running the RSPCA. It sounds ridiculous, I know. But suspend your disbelief for a second, and suppose… Read more

Real life

2 February 2013

When it is too painful to go forward any more, it is time to go back. And so it was that I found myself in the Oxfam bookshop down a… Read more

Real life

26 January 2013

Sitting opposite me in an elegant restaurant, my male friend looked deep into my eyes and said three little words. And with those three little words, he changed my world… Read more

Real life

19 January 2013

André Léon Marie Nicolas Rieu is a Dutch violinist, conductor and composer best known for creating the Johann Strauss Orchestra. So says Wikipedia. But I know better. André Rieu is… Read more

This Won't Hurt A Bit

Real life

12 January 2013

The Bupa Blooper. In years to come, that is how I shall refer to what happened when I inadvertently cancelled my health insurance policy, with what certain people seemed to… Read more

Real life

5 January 2013

‘They all have very distinct personalities,’ said my friend Hannah, as she invited me to come to her house and pick a bunny. In truth, I hadn’t given much thought… Read more

Hunting

The hunt for Cameron

29 December 2012

On a perfect winter morning, I mount a dapple grey horse in an icy farmyard a few minutes from the Prime Minister’s country home and prepare to go hunting with… Read more

Real life

29 December 2012

‘What do you mean, your ex-ex-boyfriend is still living with his ex-girlfriend?’ said my friend Sarah, pulling a disgusted face. To summarise the many questions that followed, this bosom buddy… Read more