Insights • Inspirations • Destinations • Design

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Bourbon, A Pearl & A Whole Lotta Scary Q&A

Was just about to head to bed (at 1AM: early for me) when I saw that the beautiful Tabitha at the always-fabulous blog Bourbon & Pearls {} had nominated me for some kind of Q&A thingy. (These are some of her shoes and purses, above. You can see why we're all in awe of her.)

Oh no, I thought. This was gonna hurt.
The only way was to do it quickly. Like ripping a bandaid off a gravel burn.

The Qs.

Do you think that you could write a book?
Um... No.

How long does it take you to get ready to face the day? 
This is a really cruel question.
Honestly? I try to get up between 7am and 8am when partner leaves for work, wander down to my study in my dressing gown (or will change to yoga pants and a top) and am often still there at lunchtime writing madly away before realising a shower is in order. Yesterday, someone came to visit unexpectedly, and I had to race upstairs, change, have a 'bush bath' and toss half a bottle of Guerlain's L'Heure Bleue on during the time that the visitor pulled up on the road and came to the front door. Shameful.

What celebrity or famous person would you like to have dinner with?
God. But He might not RSVP. So, failing that, Winston Churchill, Robert Redford, or Sidney Poitier. I'd ask Winston about his beloved vegie garden. And then I'd wink at Sidney. (Honey, you didn't read that.)

If you could live your life in someone else's shoes for one day whose life would you be living and why?
I often think my parents have an extraordinary life but I couldn't go to the places they go. (Patagonia, the Amazon, Alaska, Africa, Peru...) I don't know. It's always dangerous eying off other people's lives. The grass is never greener. Never. Always best to make your own life sweeter.

What would you most want for Christmas if you could have anything?
A powder-blue vintage Morgan convertible with powder-blue Hermés scarves as seat covers.
Oh,  I can't say that as we're having A Kind And Cost-Free Christmas this year (see previous post), so I have to say... er... Happiness. The Beauty Pageant Answer.

Tell me what book you are reading?
Robert Polidori's Parcours Muséologique Revisité – his 3-part photographic series on the restoration of Versailles. I bought it at Galignani in Paris last month and had to hide it – all 8 kilos AND the hefty clamshell box –in my handbag from Singapore Airlines check-in girl. Had to pretend my shoulder wasn't hitting the ground. It's one of the most beautiful publications I've ever seen. The 'back rooms' of Versailles are incredible.

If you were to be dispatched to a deserted island what would you pack?
Oh, these are trick questions!
Well, I wouldn't go in the first place!
If you were shunting me off the gang plank, I'd take a wooden dinghy. And Robert Redford. And pray Robert could row.

So... I got to the last question (above), and realised that Tabitha had actually given me other questions to answer. Not these ones above. Sorry Tabs. Can't keep up with the Q&As at this time of night. So here are a few answers to some of her questions.  I think I'm meant to pass this on now, kind of like a Round Robin thing. But I think I'm gonna carefully consider the questions I ask first...  PS Don't forget, being a journo I'm a PROFESSIONAL QUESTION ASKER!!! So yeah, it's gonna hurt. No pussy desert island musings from now on people...


What's the most played song on your iPod?
Israel Kamakawiwo`ole's haunting version of Somewhere Over The Rainbow.

If you could strike out one word from the English language what would it be?
'Got'.  It's the worst word in the English language. Even sounds terrible. And it's superfluous. The line "I have got" is a painful tautology. It's "I have". Repeat with me: "I have"...

What / who did you want to be when you were 10 years old?
Danielle Steel.

If you had to live in London during the Great Plague or Paris during the Terror which would you choose and why?
Was "Paris during the Terror" when F Scott Fitzgerald asked Hemingway to assess his private parts? Not sure of question?

Better go to bed now...


  1. i love that you'd take r. redford and tabs would take a navy seal. both excellent choices and then there'd be no reason to ever leave that island.

    1. Navy seal is a smarter choice.
      Robert Redford would probably try and direct a movie while we're there.

  2. Nosiness got the better of me, I popped over from Tabitha's to see your answers, Hermes scarves as seat that's just pure decadence but I love it.

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    1. Yes, you're quite right Jennifer. I knew what she meant. I was just being (un)funny. Probably wrote the questions too late in the evening! Thanks for your lovely history lesson, and for taking the time to comment.

  4. Would the Hermes scarves tear ? sorry can't help being practical.

    I can't tell you or anyone who I'd take to the island or have dinner with...I'm ashamed of my cradle robbing self

    1. You're hilarious.

      Probably. But seeing as the Morgan is worth $100,000+, I'm sure that (if we were paying that much for a vintage car anyway), we'd able to afford to get Hermes to send some new ones! The dogs wouldn't be allowed anywhere near the car, of course.

      It's all just fanciful. I'd never pay this much for a car in the first place. I'd put it into real estate. xx

      PS We'll go to the desert island / have dinner together. And tell great old stories about great old Hollywood stars...

  5. Dear Janelle

    Haven't heard of Israel K. Must look around for him. Until then I still rather like Billy Thorpe's version of Over the Rainbow from years ago.
    Much sympathy with the dressing gown thing. After my husband heads out the door I generally go straight to the computer and after checking emails begin writing (now over 60,000 words, but as I've said before, probably utter rubbish and unpublishable, still I'm determined to finish it). Suddenly it's lunch time and I'm still not dressed.

    If it makes you feel better about it Maggie Alderson (during her Canberra book launch) said she used to do the dressing gown thing too. But eventually, I guess once she'd made enough money, she rented an office so she now goes out to work and that has forced her out of her PJs and into a respectable outfit.

    My least favourite word is probably "can't". So negative.

    What do you mean answering NO to the question Could you write a book? You've written lots and have more on the boil. Looking forward to hearing about Picnic and where it's at.

    Best wishes, Pamela

  6. You are forgiven for answering the wrong questions!
    I'm sure your head is addled with tumbling words all day long!

  7. Oh Janelle. You make me chuckle, you funny girl. What is a bush bath or shouldn't one ask?! Old Winston would be such a fascinating companion. Wouldn't like his cigars, though. Powder blue. Nothing left to say. *Swoon*. The Versailles book sounds utterly absorbing. Lucky you. Choosing between the Plague and La grande peur is bothersome. I'd probably pick the latter as it was briefer. I think I'd have scurried away to Provence at the first sign of it! J x

  8. Does not matter if you answered the 'wrong questions'- it's the answers that count! Not surprised that Mr Redford featured.

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