Wednesday, July 02, 2008
Have been shopping for "an outfit" for "the do" - that is to say, Saturday's launch party. The problem is I need to commit a day to it rather than doing it in snaps. I gave it an hour and a half in London which included walking into a couple of designer shops where instead of a cheery "Hello," you get that sweep down-and-up-again of mascara-heavy eyelids to see if you really belong. My tactic when assistants do this is to stand very still and wait for them to meet my eye, then smile as if to say "I may not look it but in reality I am the wife of a Russian oligarch and enormously, hideously, obscenely wealthy - do not be fooled by the Marks and Spencer's handbag." In the past week or so, I also checked out a boutique sale in a hotel in the local market town where you had to try things on between the sales rail and a frosted window and a man gazed at me in blank horror as he appeared round the end of the sales rack with his small child to find me undressing (20 minutes - bearded spectators do not encourage you to linger in your lingerie thinking "Shall I try that just once more?" ). I have also scooted round a department store in the nearest city (1 hour) and yesterday visited a store where silvery-haired ladies obviously go if they fancy "a run-out" (long enough to start seriously considering wearing feathers on my head). I am not entirely convinced I will end up wearing it but I have now bought a plain black silk frock and a buckled leather belt. My mother will complain because it does not shout "Look at me" very loudly. My mother likes me to be looked at, which is possibly why I spent a substantial part of my adolescence in knitted jumpers with pictures on the front - these included a tiger, cherry blossom, an entire willow pattern design once. It is amazing I ever went anywhere.