My existential crisis was straight out the terrible twos’ playbook

Early on St Valentines Day I walked down to the car park where the raindrops were knocking off the young almond blossom petals. The slow-dropping rain was refreshing after the January drought. In the car park the red car was shining wet instead of furry with dust. I drove for 20 minutes on a winding road through low hills, intensively cultivated since the days of Roger the Norman, but abandoned since the Grande Guerre. My destination was a commercial laboratory in the nearest town for a pre-scan blood test. On the journey I went over in my mind what Catriona had said to me the night before. I wasn’t yet

How to have a happy old age

Gstaad Birthdays at my age are for the birds, but always a good excuse for a party. Messages of good wishes began early on, with loyal Speccie reader Arnold Taylor ringing from South Africa, and Rosemary and Wafic Saïd texting from the English countryside. (They wished me a happy 39th. I accepted.) My great buddy Michael Mailer, staying with the Kennedys at the family compound in Hyannis Port, had hoped to fly over but the you-know-what prevented it, while Charlie Glass rang from London to announce the end of capitalism as well as yours truly. I asked Charlie to answer me truthfully, because it was my birthday, and he swore