Saturday, October 13, 2007

Princess Diana

This is weird, but since the late Princess Diana is back in the news again having her death investigated I couldn't help but remember this incident which is of a Diana nature.

Opposite the northern end of Kensington Park Gardens, where Diana lived, there's a caff called "Cafe Diana" which is a kind of shrine to her, being named after her and lined with photographs more or less floor to ceiling, wall to wall. If you had an allergy to Princess Diana this is not the place to go for a cup of tea. You'd be sick within a few seconds I'd guess, depending on how strong the allergy is, obv.
Anyway, it's also opposite the Polish or Slovenian Embassy where a mate had to go for some reason so I took him there and went for a cup of tea in the Cafe Diana . I don't have anti-Diana allergy but I still felt slightly odd sitting there, at the window looking for him, being stared at by all and sundry like some tourist who's wandered in thinking that some local cockney geezers will be in there having a cup of Rosy Lee which they can tell their friends back home about.

But who do you think walks passed? (No, not Diana, she's brown bread). But only Paul Burrell, Diana's former manservant who disgraced himself in the eyes of the Royal Family for selling a few secrets in his books after that stupid court case.
But the bizarre thing is I KNOW Paul Burrell (a little) because he was introduced to me by his agent, a very nice man indeed called Dave. I went all the way to Cheshire, where he lived, and we had a lovely lunch. We were talking about a TV show (this was before he did all the sleb shows around the world) and it would have gone ahead but for one small thing. He changed agents, and in fact he changed agents THAT DAY, I think the new agent was even in the room while we talked , so it was all a bit awkward and nothing happened. Didn't see him again.

Until the moment I was sitting in the window of the Diana cafe having a cup of tea and looking like a tourist. He just stared at me with a look that said "WTF are YOU doing in THERE?"
but he strode on, purposefully, not feeling the need to come in and join me. In the Cafe Diana.

Now that would have been something to tell the folks back home.


Brit in Hokkaido said...

The same week as Diana was killed, my Gran was in hospital. I had been sent by my parents to go and visit her and give her some flowers. As I strode along Kensington High St with a huge bouquet, an old man said to me;
"Flowers won't bring her back you know", to which I sweetly replied in a tone of sarcasm that only 16 year olds can get away with;
"She hasn't gone anywhere yet; my Grandma only had a hip replacement".

nationwide said...

See? We've all got Diana stories.....if we happened to be in the vicinty of Kensington at the time.