October 24th 2008
Am staying at the apartment for the next week during half term and I have never been so keen to pack my suitcase. Usually I leave it til the last minute if I’m packing for holidays or a job abroad but this time I can’t wait to get started. Taking all the things I can’t use here at the moment like scented candles (they’d look a bit silly in a building site, apart from which there’s nowhere to put them) and bath essence (no bath here only showers). Everything is covered with a fine layer of dust, it will be lovely to feel clean again and not have to wipe or wash stuff every day.
At the moment we have one ancient two seater sofa in the house which we all have to share, everything else is wrapped in protective plastic and out of the way on the terraces. Iain reckons the really dirty work will be done in the next couple of weeks but am not holding my breath. He is staying here to oversee the work while me, the girls, Livvy’s two friends Em and Em from the UK and Oscar will be in the lap of luxury!
Issy and I were walking home this week from school and she told me what she had for lunch and said jus d’ananas, without thinking. She couldn’t remember what it was in English (pineapple juice). Then she was talking about helping the teacher in English and mentioned that the other kids had to do it toute seule (all alone). We laughed about her coming out with these random French words, it’s fantastic that she is starting to think in French. She was also mortified when I answered one of her teachers with pourquoi instead of quoi. Two months ago, she wouldn’t have known that I’d made a mistake but now she can pick me up on my rusty French.
Heard about a rather nasty creature down here which can be very dangerous. La chenille processionaire is a long caterpillar which is extremely poisonous. It lives in pine trees and gives off toxic spores which can kill a pet and blind a child. It has no predators and the only safe way to get rid of one is to douse it in petrol and set it alight. They hang in white sacks at the top of pine trees and if you spot one you need to call the pompiers right away. Have warned the girls that these caterpillars are not for bringing into the house.
Popped back to London for a couple of days to work on the new remake of Minder for Five. It stars Shane Ritchie as Arthur Daley’s nephew Archie and newcomer Lex Shrapnel as ‘minder’ Jamie. They were both on good form at a photo shoot in Spitalfields, and Shane’s agent Phil took me on a tour of the area and showed me where jack the Ripper’s first victim was found. Spooky! Have a feeling Lex is going to be a big name, he’s done a few movies and reminds me of a young Chris Ecclestone.