The month started and finished with family visits. First of all Quex House with the youngest, recently arrived after being in China, Sri Lanka and Indonesia and struggling with the coolness of an English September. She was horrified by the dioramas so we took refuge in the café and gardens, then headed to Margate to see Antony Gormley’s solitary sculpture, facing out to sea.
A trip up to Yorkshire for a school reunion of an impossible number of decades was fun – it would have worked even better if we had all worn badges showing how we looked in our school days! The following weekend saw me at the dahlia festival at the Salutations, being grudgingly appreciative of the stunning range of flower shapes and colours. I still can’t quite bring myself to plant any…
Sandwich Arts week featured, amongst other things, some great art from local schools and artists as well as some strikingly intricate stone carving. A visit to Deal Braderie the following day found me exclaiming over the china that we used when I was a teenager – proudly purchased using books of Green Shield stamps.
Deal had become a Regency seaside town on the day when I came across the filming for ‘Vanity Fair’. There were splendid costumes and top hats, a market in full swing, regency beach umbrellas and a handsome coach and horses.
Back at home, I had my first stab at making membrillo (quince cheese). My version is definitely more like jam than cheese but there are so many quinces on the tree that I’ll be having another go very soon – and attempting quince jelly, too.
Writing was not forgotten – I finished the first draft of Book Three, the final edits of Book Two and my publishers, Avon Books UK, invited me to their 10th anniversary party in London. I didn’t know a soul apart from my agent but it was lovely to meet some of their other authors and hear stories of all their successes over the last decade. Now I’m nervously waiting for publication day of Book One on 5th October!
The last day of the month found me in Canterbury, celebrating the eldest one’s birthday and enjoying exploring the lovely old streets. The youngest one was still finding it cold, but she’s heading back to the sunny skies and palm trees of India in 10 days time …