High life

Why I chose virtue over vice

Patmos A funny thing happened on my way to this beautiful place, an island without druggies, nightclub creeps, clip joints or hookers. I stopped in Athens for about five hours in order to look over old haunts and just walk around places I’d known as a youth, when I noticed something incredible: none of the

Real life

The problem with posh dog food

Having loaded the last sack of working dog food in Surrey into my car, I slammed the trolley back into the trolley park and shouted an expletive at no one in particular. ‘What have you done to your lovely country store?’ I thought about asking one of the sales assistants inside the newly revamped posh

No sacred cows

Why Barbie deserves the backlash

Being the CEO of a massive corporation isn’t easy. You’re expected to grow the company, increase profits and boost the share price – the traditional responsibilities of a top hat-wearing capitalist. But at the same time, you need to align your company with the ‘values’ of a hyper-liberal global elite, e.g. anti-racism, trans rights and

Dear Mary


The beauty of a serious Burgundy

It was the English summer at its most perverse. We were drinking Pimm’s while hoping against hope for better news from Old Trafford. As the clock ticked and the rain was unrelenting, one of our number emitted a groan which seemed to start from his boot soles. ‘Why can’t there be a bit of global

Mind your language

The horror of being branded a PEP

When I asked my husband if he knew what PEP meant he said: ‘It’s an emergency combination of HIV drugs that can stop the virus if you’ve been putting your todger where you shouldn’t.’ Trust him to get hold of the wrong end of the stick. To him as a doctor, PEP meant Post-Exposure Prophylaxis.


Accusative Case

Deny it how you will, there are timesWhen, sitting in the car outside the supermarketYou consider suicide A moment before, you’re scrutinisingThe legs of a young mum and the way the breeze playsGames with her skirt A child at her foot –She has a swing to her that hasn’t diminishedStill has a move or two

Edinburgh Marathon, What I Remember

(after Tracey Herd) most, is not the goal, the finish-line, but the start, (do any of us know where we are heading), the assortment of people, the runners I mean, stretching, going for last minute pees, doing their weird warm-up routines, and the straggle of loved ones congregating in Holyrood Park. I barely remember the

The Wiki Man

The turf

Relief Rally put the Ascot heartbreak behind her at Newbury

‘God it’s hot,’ said a Newbury waitress escaping into the lift from rain-soaked crowds jostling in the bars last Saturday. ‘Yes,’ I agreed. ‘It’s steaming.’ ‘Oh no,’ she replied. ‘That’s just the ladies waiting for Tom Jones,’ and the veteran Welsh warbler was indeed scheduled to be the after-racing entertainment. The race is framed to