I went to see a client's 'new' house yesterday, set in a small Oxfordshire village. I'd like to show you photos of it, but this might be a breach of confidentiality here, so I can't.
It dates from around 1480 (that's AD) and could have been used as a safe house for the kids in a Harry Potter film, complete with oak-panelled rooms which yawl like a ship on the high seas - I have fallen in love with this place and developed an almost proprietorial, protective attitude toward it before I even stepped over the ancient threshold.
Luckily, she - being the new owner - has an even more protective attitude to it, and I think she will make sure that some of the ghastly fuck-ups done by the previous owner will be undone, with a little help from me. I'll give you one little example: A small radiator against a bedroom wall has been painted with broad, dark brown, vertical bands to 'camouflage' it against the Tudor beams it is fixed to...
After the site visit, where else to go but Bicester Village?
All the signboards at the Village are written in both English and Chinese, and there is a shop there which sells nothing but flight-cases and travel bags. People get off planes, buy a flight-case, fill it full of designer clothes, then get back on the planes again. I am serious.
I saw a group of Saudi women, clad in black from head to foot with a small slit for their eyes so they could look at the products. They were buying expensive Armani or Versace outfits to wear under their black burkhas.
One of their party - who was dragging a huge flight-case on wheels - looked very out of place amongst them as they wandered from shop to shop.
She had shortish hair and a woollen hat, a cheap quilted coat and off-white trainers. She looked Arab, but not Saudi. I pointed her out to S.D. and asked who she thought she was.
"That's their servant, of course," came the then obvious answer. S.D. should know, she works in fashion retail.
Zombie Pumpkin - There was nothing on at the cinema this evening Even the usually interesting Theatre Clwyd Cinema Is showing some depressing documentary on the Conflict in t...
1 hour ago