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A Fiery book?

January 27, 2012

Once again it is my duty to report on the poor behaviour and equally poor conduct of the public schoolboy contingent of the idle rich of Valbonne.

Let’s start with tennis. It is one of those little crosses in life which I have to bear that I have as my tennis partner fellow MOG (Moustachiod Old Git) the Wingco. Despite that handicap, the ramifications of which I can discuss freely because he refuses point-blank to read this column or indeed to enter into any discussions about its content, indeed he describes it’s very existence as “ghastly”. Mercurial might be a good description. His play at the net varies between the brilliant and the laughable, but it is at least superior to his open court play where a particularly dodgy backhand is often mercilessly exploited by our opponents. However, despite this handicap, my ability to cover him allowed us to crush our opponents Mr Clipbeard and Blind Drunk Lemon Milsted yesterday.

Lunch was taken this time at upstairs at the Auberge Provencal in Valbonne Square which is a lovely venue to which we do not go enough. It has a large open fire and a nice old ambience. When describing to the Wingco (who also has a nice old ambience) which restaurant we were going to I reminded him that it was where we had staged my book launch last November. He asked if it was that rather down market establishment clearly implying that any place associated with my book had to be down market. Mr Clipbeard had left a nice present for the buyers of his house, a copy of that book as my picture today shows.

A hot topic?

The tennis result was a topic of conversation which both my opponents sought to avoid with little success. We were joined at lunch by Susie and Norman Philpot, old friends from Valbonne who were keen to become Currencies Direct customers and Master Bully Mariner Mundell.

The Master joined in with the tennis discussions because he too has often been put to sword in tennis terms by the MOGS and is none too pleased about it. Regular followers of this column will know that he was the ring leader in the nasty bullying incident in which my beautiful long beard was forcibly removed by him and some jealous public schoolboy cohorts recently, a fact that he tried to mitigate by claiming he was holding me a headlock to stop my head from moving whilst my beard was scythed into submission. He claims that it was act of bravery with one eye on health and safety, but this defence was fatally undermined by the phone call I received from him the following day where I sensed he wanted to apologise, only for him to reduce that impending apology to a “statement of regret” at the last moment. He continued forcefully to deny that he would ever bully, threaten to bully or countenance bullying in way shape or form and when I suggested that the facts stood for themselves he suggested that if I continued to fail to accept his opinion then he personally would organise some water boarding to persuade me he was not indeed a bully. Alternatively a little “bog flushing” (perhaps he meant blog flushing?), another quaint public schoolboy custom of sticking someones head down a toilet and flushing it.

Anyway, a splendidly long and eventually very liquid lunch gathering decamped from the restaurant after 4pm with the sole waitress still in attendance having dozed off and descended on one of the Master’s many properties, this one his apartment in Valbonne Village, to continue discussions about this and any number of other things that seemed desperately important at the time but I cannot recall this morning.

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