Sunday, September 09, 2007

One for the Daily Express readers

I'd like to say that the reason for my blogging hiatus was due to spending time at a Buddhist retreat or some life changing experience. It's not; it's just because work has been bloody hard and play has been bloody fun. I've had precious little keyboard time.

Time flies... which is a neat segue into the fact that it's been ten years since Princess Diana's funeral. I can't really remember how I felt about it then; I didn't lay any flowers at a makeshift memorial, I didn't use the phrase 'Queen of Hearts' or 'The People's Princess'. I did feel the impact of what happened though, it's one of those things that you cannot describe to those who weren't there. The whole nation appeared to go into shock for a week, and for a period is was like it would never go back to normal again.

Charlie was down the weekend it happened. The night before she died we'd been out drinking and ended up at Penny's house sitting in the garden trying to wake up a Bishop who apparently lived in one of the nearby homes. We got home very late. Shortly after going to bed the phone rang; it was Andrew, who was still drinking in the garden, doing spitfire impressions. We eventually managed to convince him that it wasn't really that funny and we finally got to sleep.

I got up fairly early and went downstairs; in a completely atypical move, I didn't turn the TV on. For an hour or so I read. When I did eventually put the TV on, it was quite apparent that something was up. The news was on when it should have been Saved By The Bell.

I went upstairs to tell Emma and Charlie what had happened. I think I described it as 'exciting', which it was. We phoned Andrew who answered in a bit of a mess and thought we were getting him back for his Spitfire prank.

We'd planned to go to the cinema in the evening and, such was the impact, felt it necessary to phone up to check they were still open. A couple of our friends actually chose not to go, out of respect. We had problems getting to the cinema because the motorway was closed to allow them to transport her body back.

The next morning we went back to work and speculated that there may be a day of national mourning, or more specifically, a day off. Our fiery Irish boss was apoplectic at the prospect. Which was instantly sobering and, in hindsight, probably saved us from joining the utter madness of the week.


Ah yes, the fiery Irish boss. Saw her the other day at the Diamond open day and had a rapturous welcome. Her name is an anagram of "jungle animal", you know.

I should point out that I have no memory of waking a bishop. Nor of being upstairs with Emma. The trauma of the loss of Diana must have obliterated both.

I remember the Irish boss though. Although, oddly, I can't remember her name. Julian Mangle?

Initially, when you said Charlie, I thought you meant PRINCE CHARLIE.

Beautiful photo of Diana.

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