When I call my friend Silvia, in Italy, for our weekly chat, she will push everything aside to talk to me: her boyfriend, chores, friends, dinners out. Time zones and unpredictable work schedules mean we need to maximize the time we can carve to speak to each other.
I am a maker of lists*. Or rather, of list. I work from a Moleskine diary that is a week to view and divide the facing work sheet page roughly in four. Down the left side are all the things I need to do for work, right is all personal. The lower one third of the page lists campari&sofa posts that need writing on one side, all things house and home on the other.
Each week I prioritise the most urgent tasks, and allot a day. Then I make asterisks alongside the next most pressing, for incase there is time. At the top of the left hand page – the actual dates – I note the week’s Headline tasks. What I am left with is a clear plan (to me at least) of what must be achieved. The system works fine in theory. Life, though, has other ideas and so there is lots of shifting around and reassigning. And I have a code for that – but I won’t bore you with it.
Jean-Baptiste shot himself on a Sunday. He had prepared for this day: settling his financial affairs, clearing out his house, wiping his VHS collection: intimate films made with the women he loved. He’d gone through his filofax, tippex-ing out each entry and set a deadline in a note to his ex-girlfriend. She didn’t call, so he dispatched himself neatly through the temple.
Sofafamily are breaking with tradition and having a Christmas brunch rather than our traditional late afternoon lunch. Cape Town is just magnificent at the moment, and we want to make the most of the wind-free days by heading down to the beach in the afternoon for a surf and a swim. ‘Popper Christmas’ (as the nieces and nephew call their Grandfather) will be handing out gifts at 10.30am, with the help of mimosas and watermelon bellinis, and a slightly unusual brunch will follow – campari-girl and I will be posting about the menus for our respective Christmas meals in due course. I came across this great muffin recipe by Nigella Lawson and thought it would make a perfect addition to our spread. Though I am going to alter her recipe slightly by adding in some pecan nuts, and by creating a marmalade butter. But the rest is all Nigella inspiration and simplicity and will make the house smell gloriously Christmassy.