Peter Rhodes on solstice advice, an apology at the Palace and being replaced by a plant

Today is the winter solstice. It may get colder but from now on it can only get lighter. Rejoice. But keep the thermals handy.

Lady Susan Hussey - unpaid
Lady Susan Hussey - unpaid

The Daily Telegraph devoted a few pages to “The grown-up guide to hangover cures.” Listen. I will say this only once. Grown-ups do not get hangovers.

To tell the truth, I write with the holier-than-thouness of one who is immune to hangovers. For some years I've been taking one of the commonest blood-pressure medications. It had only a modest effect on my BP but instantly cured the migraines which plagued my middle years and saved me from future hangovers. Smug does not begin to describe it.

Lady Susan Hussey and Ngozi Fulani have kissed and made up and the saga that absolutely nobody called Wheredoyoureallycomefromgate is over. Or is it? Nigel Farage told his listeners on GB News that the confrontation was staged by Fulani who took a tape recorder to last month's reception. Can he prove this? If not, will he apologise?

Meanwhile, no-one seems to have picked up on the fact that Lady Susan was a queen's lady-in-waiting for 62 years and received no payment. Modern slavery, surely?

While preparing yesterday's gripping yarn about el-cheapo second-hand furniture, I decided to retire my ancient wooden chair and replace it, for a snip, with a very smart office seat in excellent condition. It's the sort of seat that was well above my pay grade in office life, too cheap for the bosses but expensive enough to be coveted by one's colleagues and to mysteriously vanish when you took a holiday. When that happened, you had to hang around until late in the evening when all had departed and then nick your chair back from the sports desk (it was always the sports desk).

Which reminds me of the time (far away and long ago, naturally) when I came back from a fortnight's TA camp to find my office chair had been removed from the features department and shunted into the outer darkness of the newsroom. A display of indoor greenery in large plastic tubs stood where I had sat. Forty-odd years on, it still rankles, Oh, the ignominy of being replaced by a rubber plant.

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