Not the royal wedding
The lengths some people will go to in order to escape a royal wedding. Four thousand miles to Toronto, in my case.
Only to discover that Canada was in thrall to the whole William-and-Kate shebang. The happy couple were all over the newspapers and TV screens – the main CBC bulletin on Friday night led on the wedding story, devoting most of the programme to coverage and “analysis” and relegating Canada’s general election to a distant second place in the headlines. Forty-eight hours before Canadians go to the polls, all of the country’s top journalists were camped outside Buckingham Palace discussing “that dress” and “those kisses”.
Meanwhile, I spent a thoroughly pleasant Friday touring bookshops with Doubleday, my Canadian publishers, to promote FLIP and enjoying a slap-up lunch with some of Toronto’s key players in the bookselling game. Of course, as a Brit abroad, I fielded plenty of questions about The Big Day back home and had to rein in my republican antipathy to the wedding (and to the monarchy as a whole) for fear of coming across as the grumpy, unpatriotic curmudgeon that I am.
An interesting literary footnote to the Canadian election . . . the Liberal Party leader is the highly regarded writer Michael Ignatieff. Unfortunately for him, the latest polls indicate that he is about to lead the Liberals to third place behind the Conservatives and the left-wing NDP for the first time since 1867.
Clearly, writers should stay out of politics.