It was a very good day. I went here to listen to lectures given by him about him and him. Sorry for the linkiness, I don’t like a lot of links either, but it really won’t help people who innocently google any of those names – simply because I write pretty well every day, it puts me higher up Google searches than I would be otherwise, so I avoid it when I can.
Anyway, Ian was brilliant, very good speaker and a most engaging man. To start with, he’d brought along little choux pastry swans filled with Crème Chantilly (most delicious, deffo go on the list for the next bloggers’ party) and then he airily cooked while he delivered his lecture. Talking about his three most recent books, he said that his wife had said, by the time he’d finished his book about Carême, the chef, his cooking had improved by leaps and bounds, after his book about Beau Brummell, he’d become a snappy dresser. She hadn’t mentioned the Casanova book, he said…
Regarding his research for that book, it took him to St Petersburg. He doesn’t speak much Russian, so had an interpreter. He also had a Russian guide to take him round the archives. As he was looking at everything, he realised that the guide was in fits of giggles. He asked the interpreter, who was a bit embarrassed. “She is amused at the thought of an Englishman writing about Casanova, the great lover,” he explained. And then added, “especially a ginger one…”
I arrived early, to help show people around on arrival. There were 280 people who’d booked and I was fairly busy, guiding them to the lecture theatre and then back again for coffee. I chatted to those I vaguely know – as I’m the Area secretary, quite a lot of people know me but I only know them by sight – a few asked to be reminded of my name, but no one volunteered their own, so if I didn’t remember it, I was stuck. Oh well.
It had been a brilliantly sunny day, but ten minutes into my journey home, I realised that the sky to my right was deep bluey grey and that heavy rain was brewing. First I saw the double rainbow, then the downpour started. In front of me, the sky was quite light, and the first rainbow was the starting point of the dark cloud. It was very dark in the space between them, slightly lighter the other side. I also noticed, and I’m not sure whether I knew this or not, that the two rainbows were mirror images of each other, not the same.
Then it cleared up, a few minutes later it started again. I rounded a bend and there was another double rainbow.
The Sage had some good news about a potential bidder for the sale on Friday when I got home. I checked emails and so on, and cooked dinner. Finally, I went into the drawing room. There was a fire burning in the grate. He and Jamie swept the chimney this afternoon and didn’t tell me, so that it would be a lovely surprise.