NEVER ON TIME

I don't remember when I started to be someone who was late for things but it became a signature, a horrible one, which I both dreaded as inevitable, and on some level relished. It is ironic as my mother was late for everything, and I hated it. She was up to an hour late every time she collected us from school - my sister and I were the last people in the playground. My father on the other hand was punctual or early for everything. He was the person I most dreaded being late for yet I continually was. I once asked my analyst why I was late and he said he thought it was a love test. To see if the person was still there when I showed up. It felt like being in a Kafkaesque dream. I knew I needed to leave with enough time to get to my destination yet when it was the correct time to start my journey it seemed like such a waste to leave so early. And so it would repeat, sitting in a cab in a state of desperate anxiety, pretending to myself that something had gone wrong. And nothing had gone wrong except leaving when I should have been arriving. Indulging in this lateness love test burgeoned into missing planes and going to the wrong airports. Once when I was married, my husband and I were invited to stay at one of the most famous vineyards in Bordeaux. I insisted that we were leaving from Heathrow airport because the idea of Heathrow was more appealing as it was nearer to where we lived. When we got to the airport the plane was actually leaving from Gatwick. We managed to get there somehow and board a later flight. When we finally arrived at the white turreted Chateau, I discovered I had got the day wrong and our hosts were not even there. We had an excruciating dinner with footmen standing behind our chairs while we were too self conscious to even speak to each other. Another time in the early 90's I was invited to take part in a fashion show in Osaka. I had managed to blag a free ticket from Virgin Airways (the things you could do back then). I arrived in Tokyo but when I went to find the connecting flight to Osaka I was told that I only had a return flight to Tokyo. I frantically explained I had to get to Osaka, that they had made a mistake, I must get to Osaka. And I had no money. Incredibly, with some worldweary muttering between them, the airline desk staff decided to add on the extra leg of the journey and I happily sauntered off. 

Being late was like being in a trap but of my own making. And one day that trap sprang me. I started to be almost on time, and then on time. And then... early!!! It is a revelation and I love it.

More Happenings

NEVER ON TIME

NEVER ON TIME

I don't remember when I started to be someone who was late for things but it became a signature, a horrible one, which I both dreaded as inevitable, and on some level relished. It is ironic...

FRAGILE BEAUTY

FRAGILE BEAUTY

Here I am striking a pose in a room full of Nan Goldin prints at the Victoria and Albert museum. This room is part of an amazing selection of Sir Elton John and...