Detox. October 2015.

Dear Rowley,

Well my dear, the party’s over, it’s all over my friend. So said Kenneth Williams in one of my favourite¬†Round the Horne sketches. It’s the way he tells them, I find. Needless to say, the Spencer Hart launch party for my¬†Discriminating London Guide was a riot but took rather a lot out of me considering I’ve really not been well for weeks trying to shake a horrible, horrible cough that had me passing out with the pain.

So, in the words of RuPaul, I’ve made some decisions. I could go back to the Chelsea & Westminster or to A&E at UCL up the road. But Dr B and I have decided the best place for me is Bloomsbury Towers with a pack of Paracodols and a couple of inhalers to get my breath back and clear the lungs. First to be tossed into the Brabanta was my pack of cigarettes, lighters and ashtrays swiftly followed by any alcohol left in the house. I need at least a month off the juice and would ideally like to nish the cigs for good this time.

Anyway, forgive me for starting a letter sounding like a Jewish housewife but I know you were concerned for me: sad, sad tears of a clown at the party and all that. Actually I had a lovely time but was exhausted by the time I got home. Mercifully, I am feeling a tad better today. I was sufficiently chipper to visit the sauna, steam and swim this morning then head-off to John Lewis to spend my brother’s birthday voucher.

You know you’re getting old when you’d much rather have vouchers from John Lewis than saucy drawers, flowers and champagne. Mind you, I did receive the most beautiful chocolate brown cashmere scarf from Emma Willis that I am currently snuggled-up in in bed like Granny Bewis. I must remember to hang it up before going to sleep. I don’t want it to smell like the bottom of a labrador’s basket come morning.

I’m eating rather well at the moment. I suppose that is a byproduct of no fags. What we’re not going to entertain is ‘James Sherwood: The Blowsy Years’ so I’m going macrobiotic. It is quite the novelty to be in bed with a plate full of orange segments and a bottle of Badoit rather than fizzy pop and salty nuts.

Still terribly feverish and liverish but I hope with lots of bed rest this too shall pass. A consequence of my illnesses is a complete lack of patience with anyone. I left the Bat Cave this morning to have a mooch in Mayfair, Piccadilly and St. James’s that had me hissing and spitting ‘pick your feet up, you slant-eyed Devils’ at Chinese tourists. The Jermyn Street flower stall outside St. James’s Church was looking particularly festive though I am not entirely convinced that Halloween should be encouraged.

Star spot of the day was a drape diamond necklace in the window of Hancocks in the Burlington Arcade that I suspect is Van Cleef & Arpels. I tell you who has most tried my patience today: Amal Clooney. I mean, dear, where did she come from with those legs up to her armpits and shifty almond eyes? Is she a beard? Is she trans? We have to know. And I’ve had enough of that fat, sanctimonious cow Camilla Batman-jelly?-ghellish?-ghoulish?-whatever who should be put in the stocks and pelted with lentil-based Indian street food.

While we’re at it, I think Mr Yentob ‘s time is nigh at the BBC for his complicity with Kids Company. You couldn’t make up a more odious pair than Yentob and that lardy cake in fucking hideous clothing that makes Grayson Perry look like Jerry Hall. Speaking of Jerry, what do you make of her ‘Help The Aged’ relationship with Rupert Murdock? As Mrs Merton once said, I wonder what attracted her to the leathery old billionaire with one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel?

I did enjoy Covent Garden Market on Poppy Day today. So many handsome servicemen that I quite felt like the forces’ sweetheart doling out pound coins for poppies and batting my eyelashes like Betty Grable. There truly is something about a soldier…

But I tired myself out hunting for silk satin scatter cushions in John Lewis to match the Indian counterpane so hopped a taxi home to bed. To be fair, I am not coughing as badly but I can’t say I feel like the surrey with the fringe on top. I have had this exact same virus a couple of years ago that landed me in the Chelsea & Westminster for a week. It is ghastly: the pain being unbearable without a bucket ‘o whiskey and the liver screaming to be spared.

Well, I tell you Bloomsbury Towers is going to be like a temperance hall from now until Christmas. I am going to keep the people who help me close and keep the ones who drain at arm’s length. There seems to be an odd possessiveness around me when unwell that is most unwelcome. Despite being a rather gobby show-off, I am rather a private person and don’t like being fussed over or being told that someone knows me better than I do.

Anyway, blah blah blah. Enough about me. What do you think of me? I sincerely hope I don’t find a new addiction to replace the cigarettes. Drugs have never suited me so it is unlikely you’ll see me down Crack Alley under the arches any time soon. I would consider sex something of a hobby but ideally it would be nice to be a one-man-man again. Keep your fingers crossed for me…