For those of you who live in Camden I have some wonderful news!
Camden Libraries are going to stock two of my books! Sweet Lady and Singles’ Holiday. How cool is that? I am beyond ecstatically pleased as it’s difficult for us self-publishing authors to make headway sometimes; pleased and humbled. Woo hoo!
That’s something good that’s happened this week. Because if I’m honest I have not had the best week. The sale of Mum’s flat is still no further forward. It’s a saga of epic proportions, which is far too complicated to try to explain in this journal. In the words of Richard Littlejohn: You couldn’t make it up! It’s now a month past the date we’d hoped we’d have completed by and we’re still trying to sort things out. I had wonderful plans – two weeks in Antigua before going back into the Ladykillers on 28th of this month. However, that looks like it’s not going to happen which is a tragedy on so many levels. I NEED to go to Antigua because I have bills to settle, papers to sign, things to set up. Plus I WANT to go to Antigua to spend some time in Avocado Cottage, to see my friends, to relax and to have the Fella Who’s Far Away turned into the Fella’s Who’s Nearby for a short while. We’re both avid tennis fans and at the moment we have this bizarre situation where we’re both watching the French Open four thousand miles apart from each other and texting after every point/game/match to comment on what we’re seeing on the screen, or talking through Skype. Isn’t technology wonderful? He’s upset because his favourite, Federer, has gone out. My boy – Rafa Nadal – is still in and will, I hope, lift the trophy on Sunday, although in one of the worst seeding cock ups in Grand Slam history (IMHO), he meets Djokovic in the semi-final and not the final.
I was thinking today, that if people who owed me money paid me then I’d have enough money to carry out all my plans – including putting the pool in at Avocado Cottage – and wouldn’t have to worry about money at all. It’s seven years since I wrote Paradise View and I’m still waiting for payment. I took the production company to the High Court in Antigua. They were given five years (yes, that’s right five years!) to pay me, at the rate of EC$1000 per month. In over three years they’ve only made ten payments. But, they’ve made a feature film which they’ve gone round the world promoting. Yet they claim they can’t pay me. They’ve recently hired an attorney after representing themselves up until now and he can’t come cheap. Yet they claim they can’t pay me. They’re now arguing that they can’t afford $1000 a month and want the Court to reduce it to,only $800. Yet they still aren’t even paying me that amount. We’re back in court at the end of July, so whatever judgement is passed won’t be implemented immediately as the High Court then adjourns for its summer recess. So they gain more time. But I’m not going anywhere. I worked damn hard on the series and I deserve to be paid for my work. So even if it takes ten years I WILL get my money from them. But it’s galling to think I’ve had to borrow money from the bank when I could have been living problem-free on what I should have been paid.
We’ve had yet another ceremony to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, this time a service of thanksgiving in Westminster Abbey and the Old Trout was up the front again wearing a hat than the chaviest Pearly Queen would have balked at. I thought she was going to do the Lambeth Walk down the aisle. And Saturday it’s Trooping the Colour. I’m Royaled-out.
Last night the Sister and I went to the recording of Paul Sinha’s Citizenship Test at the BBC. it was a really enjoyable evening and the first time I’ve ever been in the audience for a radio show. Sinha is very witty and makes the greatest observations. It goes out on Radio Four on 1st September.
And today I had my beautiful daughter to myself for a whole hour and a half when we had lunch together sitting in the Greenwich sunshine (don’t tell her boss she went over time). The Daughter is the most positive person I know and her words of wisdom were just what I was meant to hear. And then I went on to visit Auntie who was so much better than the last time I saw her in hospital. Being back in her own home has made such a difference.
And tomorrow the Sister and I go to our second funeral in three days. Both for amazing women, both in their prime, one a cousin, one a friend, who fought so long and so hard against their conditions. Devastating.
So tonight, I’m practising GRATITUDE. Because I know that in spite of the stress that selling Mum’s flat is causing, and the frustration of not being able to carry out my plans and of not being paid what I’m owed, I know that I’m fortunate, very fortunate.
My books are going to be in Camden Libraries; I had lunch with my beautiful daughter; Auntie is better; the sun has been shining and I’m alive and well. And soon I’ll look back and laugh because this, too, shall pass.