Monthly Archives: March 2016


Reader, I moved.  No, I hadn’t left the TV remote the other side of the room (that doesn’t become critical until the Olympics begins in the summer: OFF CLICK!), I mean I stashed my stuff into a trunk, stuck it in a removal van, and waved goodbye to the circus that is London.  I’ve left the place before, and indeed, avowed never to return, but return I did, only to find the streets paved with gold rolling papers.  But enough is enough, and it was again time to seek pastures new.

It was a bit of a year, to be honest.  If the Queen had an annus horribilis in 1992, I packed at least a dozen of them into 2015, and couldn’t wait to raise a glass, or perhaps two (can’t reveal exactly how many, data protection you understand) come midnight December 31st.

My experimentation with breast cancer didn’t last that long, really: the surgery was a success, and I now possess the tits of a 19 year-old (no, can’t reveal her name, data protection etc.), tits which defy the laws of gravity as if Iain Duncan Smith had invented them, before coming back down to earth and realising he didn’t like them after all.  (Mystery as to why I thought of him when I wrote about tits).  And again, looking on the bright side, the hospital infection I contracted was completely free, as was the brain fog I endured for the ensuing five months on the sofa downing painkillers, antibiotics, prebiotics, probiotics, microbiotics, macrobiotics, symbiotics and chicken soup.

And the damp which concurrently appeared in my rented flat might be seen as another kind of adventure, especially when the landlords blamed me for it.  I could actually see their point: they’d owned the place for 18 years prior to Not Nice Etoile moving in, then all of a sudden, four years after she does, damp appears in three separate external places.  (I’m beginning to think that private sauna club I started for those Tory MPs not already in jail from Mondays – Sundays might have had something to do with it).  And so, in the midst of recovering from major surgery and months of subsequent ill health, I had to put up, pack up and find somewhere else to lay my head.

There were other interesting mountains I had to climb too, but I won’t bore you with those here.

Anyway, this is how you find me penning a blog once again au bord de la mer (check out another of my blogs, Driving Over Expats, written when I lived in Nice).  And I do mean au bord de la mer – I’m living on the seafront in Brighton, and as I write this, witnessing the nightly murmuration of the starlings. (Though I do wish they’d speak up – I can’t hear what they’re murmuring about).

I did live in Brighton for the best part of a decade in times gone by, and I must say, it’s fantastic to be back on my planet with my people, its cosmopolitan population, ethnic restaurants and bars galore, where you’re never more than 10 paces away from someone who looks like they’re wearing something for a bet.  And after four years looking out onto the River Thames, my vista now is the ever-changing landscape of the English Channel, into which a few complete morons wonderously brave souls leap every single day of the year.  (Maybe it’s only their souls that get wet, and their bodies are at home under a duvet in front of the fire and Judge Judy).  Brighton is bonkers, beautiful, arty and as joyful a place as you’ll ever visit, and I feel like I’ve come home.  (Although if George Clooney’s reading this, I’d feel equally as content in Lake Como or California. Just saying).

Thus, normal service – or as normal as it gets around here – has resumed.  Batten down those hatches, folks; Not Nice Etoile is back.

NB: If anyone would like to pre-order my new book on how their political policies reflect the calibre of this current Tory Government, do let me know and I might write it.  I’ve got as far as the title so far: Tat for Tits.

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