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Gemini 21 May- 20 June The moon continues through Virgo. Take some time to be more creative. Don’t overreach yourself tonight though
4.45 All very well living in pollution-free paradise, just wish I didn’t have to share it with entire world population of wannabe-rock-star-morningales.
5.20 Apolline has had bad night too, tossing and turning between sweat-soaked sheets (weather suddenly tropical. Lends exotic touch to thrilling tale. Have reasoned that vast majority of readers clueless re whereabouts of Limousin, can therefore indulge in literary licence.)
Ace investigator cannot expunge dinner date from mind. Just thinking of Henri sends frisson down spine. Notice all thrillers have frissons. Haven’t yet decided what variety, whether fear, excitement or something else frisson.
Apolline showers, dresses, eats breakfast. Hmm. Half baguette, confiture d’abricot, freshly ground coffee. Perhaps some orange juice. American cops always drinking Styrofoam coffee, eating weird things called grits. Some kind of organic gravel I think.
7 p.m. Gym Ms really badly infected with yoga bug now. Am lulled into false sense of security by relaxation routine. Ys. Truly now excellent at latter as mostly involves closing eyes having kip, snoring, fart or two etc. Very little skill or effort to be honest, which is all I ask of a sport.
7.25 "Sit up. Wake up Mad-e-leine…."
"Left leg behind left ear!. .left ear, Babette…"
Get hopelessly entangled after further instructions involving tricky manoeuvres with right fingers, left knee and some part of anatomy have never heard of. Feel like incompetent octopus.
8 p.m. Cannot face any more carrot or tomato juice, celery, cocktail tomatoes etc. Long for the good old days of wine and chocolate. Have brought Mars bar to eat discreetly in loo.
Gemini 21 May- 20 June Venus trines Jupiter today. Take advantage of free time to clear the cobwebs from your mind
9 a.m. First workless weekday in 18 months, things must be really bad in industry. No use writing to J-P Raffarin or the Sheik, both clearly deaf and blind, like all men. The government has management skills of radish, but all my efforts to set them on right road have been spurned. Still, what can you expect? El Shirak is lead camel of party called L’UMP.
J. has abandoned school textbooks, is gripped by referendum fever, now reading draft constitution. Point out we have no vote, is therefore not only boring but irrelevant. Dust discarded Balzac, flick through same out of curiosity. No pictures, million words on every page, is modern equivalent of hair-shirt.
10 a.m. "Well, isn’t that interesting? The constitution provides for 2 committees with 350 members each," J. reads, lifting his legs so that the vacuum cleaner (irritatingly glued to my hand) may gulp fluff gobs.
Am enraged, stop cleaning France immediately. Our taxes now going on purchase of 350-seater tables.
3 p.m. Walk down to lake with J. and Bernadette. Diggers, earth mountains everywhere. Landscaping should be finished by Monday, according to Arlette. Our checkbook journalists due back on Friday to take photos for weekend papers. "I think we should have a name for each cabin," Bernie says. "You know, like the..er…Bougainvillea Lodge…"
"In Limousin? The Hailstorm Suite, perhaps." Actually, think it’s an excellent idea, will give it some thought.
4.30 Admire Bernie’s wedding outfit, a colourful organza riot, 4 sizes too small. Still, think her spare tires already bit less inflated after one week on GL Diet. Norbert has fallen by the wayside apparently. "Started trying to run my life…I’ve had 30 years of that. You know, when I met Mr Right I had no idea his first name was Always. They’re all the same, aren’t they?"
"Yeah. And we’re all married to his relatives." Think that makes entire female species sisters-in-law.
Gemini 21 May- 20 June The moon is in Leo in your 3rd house. A day for impressing others with your knowledge and perception.
9.30 Have agreed to look after Charlie and Camille at mayoral palais, while Huguette and Bernard take triplets for check-up. Huguette says they slept for 12 straight hours after the Indian needle trick, offers me permanent job. Feel I must refuse, do not want to deprive her of motherhood joys.
"Don’t like those babies," Charlie says, waving as his parents drive off. "I’m glad they’re taking them back. They’re noisy, smelly, pooey. I’d rather get another dog."
Can see his point. We didn’t discover dogs until after having children either. Could’ve just wrecked the carpets instead of our sanity.
11 a.m. Have taught the twins some English, introduced them to anarchic use of Sausage & Mash, passed on useful tips for driving teachers nuts. Must say they are very attentive students, haven’t once moaned re TV programs, videos etc.
"How do you play golf?" Badly, but do not say so, might sully image. Besides, recognise indoctrination opportunity when I hear one.
"Well, you walk miles and miles hitting a little white ball into small holes as you go…er, then the person who’s taken the least number of wallops with his walking-stick is the winner."
"Sounds a bit daft."
"Well…ye-es. But lots of golfers lose their balls on the walk, so people like you find them and can sell them back to the golfers for a fortune." Notice Charlie’s eyes lighting up. At least have planted the seeds of enterprise.
Gemini 21 May- 20 June The moon conjuncts Jupiter. You feel showered by gifts from heaven today
5 a.m. Henri wants to see Apolline again. You’re so cute, baby, I could just eat you. Looked so serious when he said it. Loves those long, artistic fingers, choking life out of napkin. Think maybe he too was a little nervous.
Ap. scoops apricot jam off skirt, looks at watch. Time to hit the road. Jumps on moped, weaves through traffic, giving finger where appropriate, arrives at Commissariat.
Melamine hands Apolline mug of coffee, pile of memos. Martin Martin has called 3 times, she says breathlessly, he wants to see you. Says it’s important, there are things we need to know. Huh. Nothing more she wants to know from him. Probably got wind of her dinner date, jealous bastard.
Waits for Martin in coffee shop with drooling Melamine. He arrives 10 minutes late, says the girls won’t leave him alone, laughs. Melamine titters, Apolline stony-faced, gives Mel good kick under table. Martin turns sombre suddenly, says Henri was engaged when they were students together in Paris. So what? Apolline retorts rudely. Yes, but his fiancée disappeared. You should check it out, sweetheart. I’m not your sweetheart, she roars mutters hisses. Gets up, knocks coffee cup over, watches silently as the hot liquid runs gallops rockets across the table. Drips into Martin’s lap. Arrghh.
Apolline stalks out. Melamine follows, limping.
9 a.m. Violent thunderstorm, electricity in on ‘n off mode. J. in merde mode. Lock myself in salon; watch storm. Hailstones big as golf balls. That’s sick, God.
Gemini 21 May- 20 June Arrangements you make today may have lasting benefits. Watch out for mishaps later
1.30 John’s brother on phone, invites us to his 50th birthday party the week before Great Limousin Flower Show. Am reluctant, but accept. My colleagues can enjoy last-minute panic. Do not like cities, but at least unlikely to be gored by Limousin bull in central Paris.
7 p.m. Visit site. Greet Stéfan from France 3 like old friend. Admire his designer wellies, sou’wester. Paris scribblers shod uniformly in fake Guccis, packamacs.
A loud yuppie, Gérard de Somebody, seems to be organising the TV circus. "Darling, could you just shift your tits a tad left….soooper. Got it. Merde. Sodding rain’s got into the doodahs…what’s this jungle settlement called? Anyone know?…"
"If it rains in the morning, it’ll rain in the afternoon," Grizzelle bellows to nobody in particular. "An’ if it’s dry in the morning it’ll rain in the afternoon."
Hustle local weatherperson away before French Revolution IV starts, even though recognise truth of mantra. Believe clouds migrate thousands of miles a week just to dump their progeny over Limousin.
Diggers have uncovered small stream leading away from lake. Is v. pretty, tinkles melodiously through future Zen garden before bisecting future (banned) championship golf course. No real problem, can add welly hire to list of golf house facilities if we get permit for future St.-André’s. Grrr. When we get it.
Progress is astounding, can see the form of each garden already. Will have to have another chat with the nurseries before Monday. Arrange same with plant management colleagues before we all pose in front of newly baptised Chestnut Lodge (adjoins bijou Oak Cottage).
"Light’s not right, darlings…shuffle those bums a bit left…hold on…" Gérard dancing behind camera, not sure he has noticed huge hole behind, destined for septic tank. His assistant waves furiously, Gérard steps back. "What? Let me get this done sweetie, then we can all go back….aarrghh…"
Oh dear. Think yuppie now downwardly immobile.
9.30 Gérard safely tucked up in ambulance, doctor says leg will mend in time, less sure about camera. Looked like mud wrestler when firemen eventually hailed him out of hole. Blamed incident on Friggin’ Limousin Weather. Personally think gravity to blame.
Gemini 21 May- 20 June The moon is in Scorpio in your 6th house. You’re obsessing or feel intense about health matters, co-workers, or even food.
2 p.m. Have negotiated super deal with Plantes Alors, realise small fortune in bank likely to diminish if spent.
Visit Gérard in hospital en masse. Looks less than excited with crowd of thinning middle-aged yokels, but instantly cheered by bottle of Limousin calvados. No calves therein, but apples and walnuts. Concoction about 300° proof, v. effective analgesic, amnesiac.
Creep away to coffee machine for fix. Spend 6 mins locating button for Kenya blend, long, no sugar. Looks like soup, double, lentil. Grope for change. Press button again. Head butt fraudulent machine. New cup filling with tea, white, foul. Merde. Change inevitable, except from vending machine.
Gemini 21 May- 20 June Take no notice of those who try to predict the future. They’ve got it all wrong
Gazelles invited to tea with Grizzelle & sewing circle. Am freaked out by granny production line, for all her lack of social skills Grizzelle is needle wizard. Françoise says they should run workshops so craft not lost for future generations. Think may need long-term cooperation from God.
Am less keen than others to submit to Grizzelle’s latest wheeze. Some idiot gave her a crystal ball for her birthday. Am suspicious, but listen politely. Correctly divines number of children. Rack brain, not sure whether she already knew.
"You live with someone who gives you grief," she says morosely. "But never give the sucker an even break."
"You are going to a big city soon….to celebrate something…" Hmm. She certainly doesn’t know about the Paris Party. Not unless J. has been secretly dating a sugar granny.
"You will meet someone there….who will give you career a boost…I can see…yes, it’s a contract…."
Hey, maybe there’s something in this nonsense. You live and learn. Well, at any rate you live.