hello, jo’burg!




this gave us Pause for Thought (although we’ve seen something similar down south in the US of A)

but do you know the Nicest thing about having an International Career?


we have delightful friends, like Sbu (seen here wearing some fierce shoes, carrying a chic bag), to meet for tea in almost every city we’ve ever been to.

and we learned to say “Impilo!” which means to health/life! (in Zulu)

historical context is Terribly Important to us so we also asked for a quick lesson in 18th Century warriors (because we adore the 18th century as you know) and where on South African Radio we might get to talk about our book (yes, yes, we’re on the Publicity trail wherever we go, darlings).

and apparently the best place is on Jenny Crwys Williams show which looks a lot like the SA answer to Women’s Hour (BBC, doff cap) so we’ll be sending Ms. Williams a note shortly.

now we MUST listen to who-we-are-in-RL rehearse her speech (she’s on mid-morning tomorrow and needs her beauty sleep).

night, darlings.

did you have a good monday wherever you are?

is it cold yet in your part of the Planet?

sweater/jumper/cardi cold or like overcoat bought from a thrift shop in the mid-80s Madonna-in-new-york Russian style freezing?

simon, tea, nancy mitford and the soothing sound of a ticking clock in the drawing room.


the last few hours in London are passing Most Pleasurably.



of the Very Intelligent narrowed eye expression. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

and a great *lookofftocameraTwo* gaze. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

a splendid slump and a purr when finished writing in his moleskine. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

we made tea (simon demurred in favo(u)r of a small sip of water for himself)OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

and gazed out into the very nice garden. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Thrilled to see some good friends. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

simon enjoyed bits of cold comfort farm being read out while he snoozed. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAseriously – if one HAD to travel all the way to South Africa (although it is a glamorous proposition, we’re Aware), there is Not a nicer way to spend the last few hours with a simon, tea, nancy mitford, stella gibbons and a ticking clock.

we’ve known a few simons in our time but this one has to be the absolute Best.

just saying.


so we’re about to leave.

don’t expect to hear from us until we LAND in Cape Town sometime around teatime on Friday.

mainly because we managed to break *sighs* the US-to-UK electrical adaptor which means we are r u n n i n g out of j u i c e as the Americans say and won’t be able to re-charge until we can plug in the (hopefully more sturdy) US-to-SouthAfrican electrical adaptor device.

travel does broaden the mind but sometimes threaten the intellect.

see you below the Equator*

*right, non?

Most Excited.

loveliness in london town.


it’s After Midnight here *saidvaguely* (we are not in earls court now – but with Friends in a beautiful Farrow and Ball painted house).

we must s l e e p.

but first pictures.

it’s been a busy but beautiful 24 hours or more….





thank you to LC who posed with his hand on Oscar Wilde (that didn’t sound quite right). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

doesn’t London look so 1930s and glorious still with its lettering of Places to Go and People to See (we did a LOT of both yesterday and today). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

thank you to IB posing with cuff slightly exposed here. nice job.


and thank you to Mr. Nigel Slater who helped us rehearse at Blackwells (or was it Waterstones?) for the Book display – we spent this morning with our Publisher talking about international rights and so on (such a gorgeous thing to discuss). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

happiness really is a fresh magazine and a hot cup of builder’s tea in a caf’ off Piccadilly. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

but a set at the Albany would be equally divine. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

as were the windows at Fortnums this evening (we have to say that London is Awfully Festive!)OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

what’s not to love about an Edwardian Arcade?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

and a re-commissioned Routemaster bus.

just like in the old films.

Screen Shot 2013-11-07 at 12.22.45 AMwe almost forgot to share this with you…..

and now we s l e e p. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAhopefully tomorrow we can introduce you to Simon.

he lives here too.

clue: *purr*

you’re right.

not hard at all.

jetlag, baby, jetlag.

hello, london.


we’re here!

and quite MAD (in a funny way) from the overnight flight from NYC to London in 51H (don’t ask) with probably not-exactly-2-hours-sleep but the Virgin Atlantic staff were splendid – all perky british essex voices and a kindly way about them – especially when dispensing tea or hot chocolate (nobody was allowed coffee as we were all supposed to Sleep) and then the Lights Went Out and we all did, duly, sleep (sort of).

now we’re here!


London looks lovely in the rain.

but there again, it always did….


we braved the Tube (must not call it the Subway) because, well, getting a taxi is just Foolish with London Traffic.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

we had a little snafu before we left Manhattan – our hostess for tuesday night suddenly got STRUCK down by a Flu Virus *shudder* and so we decided we had better NOT get sick as we’re en route to South Africa to do some important work (well, we’re not doing it, who-we-are-in-RL is doing that bit, but we’ll be reporting in Here).

so we had to ask Mr. Expedia if he had a last minute room and he did but we couldn’t check in until 2PM and the flight arrived at 7AM so we had an adventure (see pictures).

this is the only thing that still annoys us about England – the private worlds of the privileged.

yes, yes, we *know* Los Angeles has many a gated community – but one doesn’t know about them unless one does know about them – here the private parks are on full display and one presses one’s nose up against the railings to no avail. *sigh*. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

but this cheered us up immensely. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

as did a breakfast at the Troubadour. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

that’s been on site since 1951 (which is not actually that long for an English Establishment but now we live in L.A we practically reeled with excitement.)OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

so many marvel(l)ous Mews around our hotel (Earls Court – decadent and threadbare but utterly perfect gentry-wise). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

more up-against-the-railings-shots. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

ah – a sweeping Georgian Terrace. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA


and the sort of places Vita Sackville-West would have visited when In Town. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

this is our little room in the eaves.

isn’t it sweet?

sort of Student Nurse in size. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

one could almost be in paris with a rooftop view.

and now we take a short nap.

before heading out into the night to thrill to the lights of soho and Beyond.

ta dah!

crazy with lack of sleep but remembering to use a Proper English Accent, darlings.


ciao manhattan and see ya brooklyn


we’re packed (again) and heading off to the airport in a black town car in approximately 45 minutes (give or take – actually no, we’re Very Precise)

another lovely day.

and some Very delicious meetings at our Publisher’s (such a lovely word) NY HQ if we may say so – *bigsmiletocamerawhileholdingbook*

and here’s one that you’ll remember, we’re sure – the words-in-your-head are underneath.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Harry Burns: Doesn’t matter because the sex thing is already out there so the friendship is ultimately doomed and that is the end of the story.

Sally Albright: Well, I guess we’re not going to be friends then.

Harry Burns: I guess not.

Sally Albright: That’s too bad. You were the only person I knew in New York.


ciao manhattan – and see ya, brooklyn……..

darlings – we’ll see you in London in the morning.

have a gorgeous evening/night/morning whatever Time Zone you’re currently residing in.


fade to black (pashmina).