|The 'How To' memoir course room|
Monday, 25 November 2013
Friday, 22 November 2013
|Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy - George Smiley's house no. 9 Markham St Chelsea|
On Tuesday evening this week, I watched the first in the BBCTV series The Cold War, followed by the first two episodes of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and a documentary about Kim Philby. On Wednesday, I passed the house where George Smiley, the fictional protagonist of John le Carre's novel lived: no 9 Markham St. My house a little further down the King's Road was used for one scene in the series. The first floor drawing room was transformed for a week into George Smiley's bedroom. Alec Guiness sat in my little office on the ground floor, or in the garden, between takes. I am indebted to the BBC for the fee which allowed my two daughters and me to swan off to Sardinia for a very good summer holiday. On our return, I discovered that our cat had given birth to a litter of kittens behind my filing cabinet, and the office carpet was alive with fleas.
Thursday, 7 November 2013
Wednesday, 6 November 2013
Tuesday, 15 October 2013
|'The Two Mrs Abbotts' - set in wartime Britain|
'The Two Mrs Abbotts', the third in a trilogy by longtime Moffat resident D.E. Stevenson has now been published by Persephone Books Ltd
In 'Miss Buncle's Book', the heroine wrote a novel about the village she lived in. She then had hastily to depart because the true identity of 'John Smith' was about to be revealed. In 'Miss Buncle Married' she and her publisher husband leave Hampstead for Wandlebury, a village within commutable distance of London.
'The Two Mrs Abbotts', the third and last sequel, set in WWII, has great good humour and a real understanding of the difficulties involved in keeping the home fires burning.
Monday, 14 October 2013
|My kitchen window|
At Wigtown I had a uniquely eerie experience. One morning I went to a talk by Peter Conradi, about a visit of the Royal Family to the US in 1939. Conradi described an episode where a dining table loaded with Limoges china collapsed from the weight of silver, glasses, china etc much to the consternation of President and Mrs Roosevelt who had borrowed some of the china from a rich friend. That same evening, I was at a dinner with various writers and the organiser of the festival when lo! The table collapsed under the weight of etc etc. Luckily there was no great damage done, amazingly nothing was broken because it happened quite slowly, caving in from the middle, and everything was caught by the table cloth, other than the wine. Then when I got back to my hotel there was a satisfactory 'third' collapse when the little Ikea table I had put my case on suddenly gave way. When I reported this the following day to my fellow diners at Wigtown I was accused of being a poltergeist but I am happy to say there has been no repeat.