It's been a busy few weeks chez nous. Mipcom was the usual chock a block celeb fest in Cannes with the great and the good flying in to promote and sell their latest TV projects.
Trinny and Susannah were on great form, sharing their secrets to looking good in your 40s and 50s, what not to wear if you want to age gracefully (I listened hard) and generally telling it like it is. Go girls.
Matthew Modine was a gentle soul as he talked about his new sci-fi end of the world series Cat 8 and Sarah Wayne Callies from The Walking Dead was refreshingly on the ball about life in Hollywood. The hot tip for great TV coming soon is The Americans, a sizzling new pilot starring Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys about the secret lives of Cold War spies.
Then there was the Grasse 10k race, which Liv had press ganged me into signing up for. The last time I ran it was three years ago, in 47 minutes, which was never going to happen again and in typical Competitive Mum spirit, I was loathe to say yes and not be able to beat my previous time. But it was good training for Liv's Manchester marathon next spring and her first big race so I agreed to put my own ridiculous competitive spirit to one side and be her running partner.
The day dawned last Sunday, sunny and a bit too warm for running at 75 degrees, and off we set for Grasse old town along with 1899 other mad souls. I was a bit jaded, the result of a ridiculously late night at Ecole des Filles with friends. We were so busy chatting that I forgot about getting an early-ish night and only having one glass of wine and suddenly it was 1am, the wine was still flowing and I had the prospect of less than 8 hours sleep....not the best preparation for a race.
So it came as quite a surprise that despite a slight hangover, I enjoyed it as much as I did. It's the furthest I have run for a year, and pounding the tarmac looking out across the countryside to the coast felt brilliant. There was something very cool about being in the midst of almost 2,000 other runners with music pumping across the PA, jazz and steel bands playing en route and spectators shouting out 'Allez, les filles' which is difficult to do justice to here.
We both finished in 56 minutes, a major achievement for Liv, who only took up running
six months ago, and not such a shabby result for someone who could barely put one foot in front of the other last spring.
I am a London-born journalist, married with two daughters, who one day took a punt and upped sticks with my family, our cats and dogs to start a new life in the South of France.
Prompted by the desire to have an improved quality of life and better manage the balance between working and tasting the coffee, we sold up lock stock and barrel and headed for the little Provencal village of Le Bar sur Loup, 30 minutes from Nice.
Our beautiful Victorian house in Hertfordshire was swapped for a derelict villa on a hillside which represents a huge black hole into which we throw endless fistfuls of money but hey, we have sunshine, views to die for and the best rose in the world to drink.