I was in bed with flu for most of last week. I cancelled an interview I was supposed to conduct this morning with the author of a gruesome-killings novel set in Hongkong. It'll have to be done by phone later in the week. What a shame. I was quite looking forward to meeting this Devon-born woman who ran away from home aged 16 and got involved with triads after being addicted to heroin(she was only trying to score ampethamines, so let that be a lesson) It's called The Trophy Taker, a reference to the villain's penchant for taking souvenirs of his victims, except in this case they are no items of underwear but body parts. Hopefully I'll write it up for Dimsum.
I have another review outstanding, although I've nearly done that, an autobiography called Blue China about a half-Italian half-Chinese woman born in Shanghai c.1940. She's a classmate of mine and I'm meeting her in Chinatown tomorrow for lunch. One thing, if a Chinese person invites you, you know they'll be paying. There'll be a lot of pushing food round plates, though. Rosemary, or Bamboo, to use her pen-name, is an impossible glamorous ex-model and I've still not recovered my appetite.
I have to finish a write up a of show I saw last Sunday, before the flu kicked in. Called East Meets West it featured The Chinese Elderly Art Group from Beijing. A troupe of septuagenarians cavorted about the stage of the Queen's Theatre in Shaftesbury Avenue, performing traditional folk dances. That's where daily xigong exercises gets you.
My copy of the Goldsmiths Alumnus magazine called Goldlink 30, arrived, containing my report on a talk I there before Christmas. 'Sounded as if it was very boring'. Thanks, Roy. It's a trendily-designed alumni mag with a picture of a girl blowing bubble-gum on the front. So I'm feeling quite positive.
I'm going on a caravan weekend in Essex with the grandchildren. A sign I'm feeling better, this morning I went up to Stanford's, in Long Acre, to get an ordnance survey map of the area. As I went in I heard a young man ask an assistant, 'Do you have a map of London?'