Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Mad Men and Englishwomen

There are times when being a jet setter journalist is a lot of fun. Jaunts to LA, tick, Hawaii, tick, Maldives (landing in a sea plane, then relaxing between shoots in an overwater bungalow) tick. Then there are times when it is mind-blowingly, stressfully not fun, ergo last night stuck on the drive unable to open the electric gate due to stair-rod style horrible rain (a daily reality in the UK right now but still blissfully rare here.)

I get ready for a night that promises to be fun at Mipcom in Cannes, which involves registering for the festival, watching a screening of one of the latest Mad Men episodes so far unseen on UK television (need I say more) oh and a Q&A with the supremely talented, good-looking and yes genuinely nice Jon Hamm, aka Don Draper. Followed by cocktails at the Martinez. Ho hum, sooo worth venturing out in the gladrags on a rainy Monday night for.

Manage to make it up the rapids-style drive to the car, a not inconsiderable feat given the unsensibly high black boots I was wearing. Press the gate beep, nothing. Press again, still nothing. Call Issy on my mobile at the house to ask her to press the intercom gate buzzer, STILL NOTHING. Under normal circumstances I would have been a bit fed up, then thought about the advantages of not driving to Cannes on a wet and windy Monday night and been quite upbeat about my fate. But not when the hottest male TV and film star of the moment is waiting in Cannes.

Cue the hot handyman and jack of all trades (which implies master of none, and yet he can do it all, plumbing, electrical, even chimney sweeping!) Iain is none too impressed to be summoned from his warm dry PC to look at the gate in pouring rain but he graciously did it anyway before telling me there was NO WAY I was leaving the drive that night. Something in my crestfallen face and whingeing tone along the lines of ‘how I am I supposed to do my job and earn money if I can’t leave the house? I CANNOT miss the star of Mad Men’ must have had an effect because he then spent 45 minutes trying different ways to restart the electrical short before dismantling the gate mechanics so we could open it manually, me by now in my wellies trying to be the electrician’s mate and watching the hair I’d straightened earlier frizz into something approaching an exploding mattress.

No matter....reader, I got off the drive while Iain swam down it for a hot shower and then drove like a demon so as not to keep DD aka JH waiting. In the flesh, he is charming, funny, relaxed and even more handsome than he is on screen. If that's possible. If you are wondering what I’m on about, tune into Mad Men on BBC4 tomorrow night and all will be revealed.

Tomorrow, lunch with Robert Redford, Jon Hamm and a host of other celebs in Cannes. That is one big tick. To be continued.