High life

High Life | 28 March 2009

So, one more winter season is kaput, the best snow conditions in 50 years gone the way of all things. Like the song says, referring to a girl, every time I say goodbye to the Alps, or to the Med six months later, I die a little. Mind you, the sea is feminine, especially in

Low life

Low Life | 28 March 2009

There’s a young girl at our gym who has recently burst into flower. She’s so extraordinarily beautiful she’s like a sport. Here’s one, you think, that even Nature herself is slightly surprised at. I can’t bear to look at her, either directly or obliquely in the mirror. If she enters my line of vision, I

Real life

Real Life | 28 March 2009

This recession ought to suit me down to the ground because I hate anything that costs a lot of money. I’m the sort of person who sits in a Michelin-starred restaurant reading the menu and suddenly blurts out, ‘HOW MUCH!? Fifty pounds for a starter?! I’m not paying that!’ and summons the waiter to complain

More from life

The turf | 28 March 2009

East Ilsley is the ideal English village, with a pub, a church and a village duckpond, where moorhens pick their spinsterly way across the mud fringes. Blackbirds trill a welcome from the mellow brick walls. Round the corner, past the allotments is Summerdown Stables, where a feisty two-year-old colt is banging hell out of the

Status Anxiety | 28 March 2009

Our reaction to Jade’s death shows that we are ready to elect an Old Etonian as PM What does the death of Jade Goody tell us about the way we live now? For some, the fact that her battle with terminal cancer became such a three-ring media circus will be a cause of despair. Are

Dear Mary

Dear Mary | 28 March 2009

Q. My problem may make me seem selfish and spoilt but I suspect that some of your readers will sympathise. Since I was a schoolgirl I have daydreamed about owning my own flat in Venice. Finally I have managed to buy a wonderful apartment there and it has now been restored to perfection and is

Mind your language

Mind your language | 28 March 2009

My husband shook his head in a sorrowful, dismissive fashion and said: ‘You’ve lived a very sheltered life.’ All I had done was to ask what cascading meant in the sense that the Local Government Association wanted to ban. My husband shook his head in a sorrowful, dismissive fashion and said: ‘You’ve lived a very

The Wiki Man

The Wiki Man | 28 March 2009

The strangest thing happened to me the other day. I went into a branch of PC World and found nothing to buy. I have left PC World empty-handed before, but only through an act of will. Occasionally I would steel myself not to buy anything before I went in, treating the trip as a test