I tend to be pretty organised, most of the time. I live amid chaos, which is how I like it, but even among piles of paperwork, I always know where the gas bill is. Unless it gets tidied away. In which case, I have no clue. It’s a good old while since Aimée had a purge of the paperwork, so hopefully, I haven’t lost anything vital to the kitchen drawers.

Anyway, part of my extreme, if messy, organisation, is that I write all the Christmas cards in October. I know. It’s a risk. What if someone moves… or worse? I’ll point out, I don’t send the cards until the second week of December – at the earliest. However, most of the cards are for friends of my parents. As such, they like a bit of detail in the Christmas card. They don’t care for:

Dear _____
Merry Whatnot

Far too bland.

I have to give them a summary of the year. Writing, dogs, Aimée’s plans for the New Year, my plans for similar, that sort of thing. It takes a couple of drafts to get the news into an order, and then, I write the same damn thing in every single card. My hand usually cramps up round about the J-surnames, but that’s why it takes me a couple of days to get them all done.

Now, why am I blathering on about Christmas when it’s only May? A very good question.

It’s because, even though I’m really good on the cards, I am so bad on the presents. Sooo bad. I wrap them. Usually the last present is well-wrapped. The earlier ones are a mesh of sellotape, good intentions and expletives.

What I’m really talking about here are the send-able presents. I shop. I wrap. I address the envelopes. I pop them in a shopping bag in the hallway, all ready for Jane in the post office, and then… somehow, it’s February, and they’re still sitting there.

Not good. I’ve had the same presents sitting, waiting for my sister, my uncle, you name it, for at least two years.

Among the unsent presents is a copy of W1A, which I know my godparents liked when it was on the telly.


(And finally, I’ll get to the point.)

I didn’t watch it, but now I have to, so my godparents’ present will be new this year.

Because W1A is mine. It must be mine because… Monica Dolan.

She’s tremendous. She won the Best Supporting Actress at the Oliviers for All About Eve – well-deserved, she was utterly joyous as Karen. I loved her in Inside Number 9.


She was just wonderful in Eye In The Sky – which is a brilliant film, if you haven’t seen it – I recommend it enormously. Big thumbs up. Plus, Alan Rickman, so a double-whammy of tremendous.

Go ahead, go shopping… https://amzn.to/2M2neae

Monica Dolan is amazing. Thus, obviously, W1A is mine.