Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Clarence tells me that the BBC are reporting that a rare blue diamond is on display prior to auction at Sotheby's. Sounds like an interesting trinket for the Memsahib. I also want to pick up a further Monet. At present we have three on the stairs, but a fourth would make the set. (It might also stop Arabella from singing "Monet, monet, monet; it's a rich man's world" every time she climbs the staircase).

Sunday, April 26, 2009

I had a flash of inspiration the other day – I have decided to co-opt the family into my campaign to improve the standard of writing at the office. At weekends I have started bringing home some of the duller technical documents produced by the team, and the heirs’ role is to provide suitably enlivening embellishments.

The girls have been sprinkling the text with metaphors taken from their favourite nineteenth century authors while Tarquin, bless him, is adding an apt quotation from Virgil or Horace to each title page.
You can’t imagine the expressions on my team’s faces when I return them on Monday morning.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I am spitting blood over the "Budget" - I lend significant sums in both bullion and cash to help bail the country out of its financial crisis - and that charlatan in Downing Street has the temerity to raise my taxes.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The weather is looking settled. 

I am tempted to take the motorcycle when I head for Worcester tomorrow. I need to get the feel of my beloved Incitatus as I sweep down the highways with the wind in my hair (metaphorically) and the gentle touch of leather on silk.

I will check with Clarence, but believe that this weekend is the first meeting of the year for my Posh Pistons chapter of the Angelum Infernum 

Sunday, April 19, 2009

With all the fuss recently about anti-capitalist demonstrations, I have given some thought to safeguarding myself when in the city (the Lady Hermione touchingly expressed some concern last night, while browsing some life insurance literature).

My first strategy was quickly ruled out by Tarquin, who reminded me that a twelve bore can't legally be used on anarchists, even after the twelfth. So a more subtle approach was called for. I have decided instead to cultivate a disguise - an alter ego if you will - that should attract considerably less attention than I normally do when out and about.

To this end I have appointed Osbourne to advise me on sartorial matters, and to drill me in the ways of the common man. He scoffed somewhat at my first attempt, pointing out that the mere substitution of a less expensive Rolex did not, in itself, effect the desired air of impecuniosity. The good chap took me in hand, allowing me to try on a few of his own estate clothes until we had constructed a most passable rendering of vulgarity.

Osbourne reminded me that the appearance was only one aspect of the character; if I am to be convincing in my new persona then I also need to adopt a suitable vernacular and mannerisms. I suggested that I accompany him one evening to the local hostelry - in full costume of course - where I can join his circle of acquaintances and soak up the coarse ambience. It might just have been the light, but it seemed to me that he turned quite a peculiar colour.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Following the family tradition we allowed villagers to come on an Easter parade, egg hunt, and egg rolling competition in the grounds. A few hundred turned up with their children in tow. It's always so interesting to see what they can achieve stitching together scraps of fabric to make outfits and hats.

I insisted that the staff join in with the event and that they dressed up as Easter Bunnies. This seemed to go well, except for Osborn. He strolled out of the stable block with black fishnets, a black bodice (with a fluffy white tail), and some furry ears on a headband. I am not convinced he has got the right image in his mind.

The Memsahib, Persephone, and Arabella judged the parade. This was done by tapping candidates on the shoulder to remove them from the parade, until 3 were left. I'm sure that Persephone is going to be a great entropreneur as she insisted on approaching the children in the parade, pointing at them, and say "You're fired". The three that survived were graded 1st, 2nd, and 3rd and given rosettes and a small token (£100, £50, and £25) respectively. They seemed very grateful.

The egg hunt went without major incident, though an ambulance was called when the geese and swans decided to defend their territory. (Will these people never learn?)

The egg rolling was great fun as the families made their way to the top of one of the steeper hills in the grounds and then tried to roll their eggs to the bottom without breaking them. There was a stewards enquiry regarding a couple of eggs that were patently made from alabaster or marble rather than being natural. These were disqualified. 

As usual there the usual thrills and spills as families charged down the slope after their eggs. It was a great success. This year we only saw a handful of broken bones, and the cases of concussion were kept below the record 22 of last year. Quite managable - and treated by St John's Ambulance brigade as one of the primary training exercises of the year.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Well it's Easter. Maginficent smells are wafting from the kitchen as Dawkins prepares a feast worthy of the festival. I haven't checked on the menu (that is the Memsahib's domain) but have no doubt it will be excellent.

We have just had our traditional "Egg" ceremony where each gives a painted or chocolate egg to each of the other family members. I must say the girls where quite taken with theirs and are still playing inside it, and the Memsahib was delighted with several small "confections" I had acquired by Faberge.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

I have received in today's mail a brocher from Frauscher. They do make lovely boats. We have several moored by the lakes, but by way of this brochure they are introducing me to their latest model.

The special edition "686 Lido Dino Feltrinelli" looks ideal for pottering about in the nice weather.

Friday, April 10, 2009

I’m already starting to notice an improvement in the standard of writing in the office. The staff are taking a real pride in their work, and often stay late to polish their documents and discuss the quality of each other’s prose.

Not wanting to let up, I have scheduled a series of educational sessions for the team, in a format often used at the company – the “lunch and learn”. As the name suggests, the usual arrangement is that those who can attend in person bring along sandwiches, while the others dial in to a sophisticated piece of telephonic equipment. All of this seemed a trifle vulgar to me, so I have decided to host the events at the club instead. The King George Hall has been reserved, and the team will be ferried there in a few of my older Jags (Osbourne will deploy seat covers - some of the staff wear rather grubby clothes).

I have asked Heston to provide the catering, now that he has the Fat Duck up and running again - but I’ve asked him to leave norovirus off the menu.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Whilst looking over Tarquin's shoulder I noticed he was reading something called "Born Rich" on the interwebnet (or whatever). Very interesting. In fact, I have decided to take up one of their offers and have the sound system in the Astons removed and replaced with Bang & Olufsen equipment. 

Thursday, April 2, 2009

We said farewell to the Obamas this evening after their short stay. Of course, the "goody bag" we gave them was far superior to the one they received from that cheapskate Brown. Apart from the obvious items (fine champagne, truffles ...) we also included - at Michelle's request - a couple of Tshirts emblazoned with the name of that most excellent beat combo, Cardinal Sin and the Bum Notes. The Obama daughters are apparently keen fans, and were heartbroken by recent rumours in the musical press that the lead singer is soon to depart. I assured them that the band is to continue performing.