The cocktail party.
At 5.30pm an Indian guy calls up in a bit of a flap.
"Please Mr Bon, party already started, Prince Charles there, can you go in 10 minutes please!"
"Impossible" I say, "we were told it was a six-thirty ride up the hill. We might be ready by six o'clock, but right now I'm butt nekk waiting for the shower."
"Okay, six o'clock good sir".
Going to meet royalty and we're in a rush.
"Is that a general royal policy?" Y asks me, "You know to keep the commoners on their toes?"
The do was fine. Beautiful setting , on a terrace overlooking the lake, just as the sun fell away behind the hills. British commissioners in charcoal suits; Indian gentlemen in the afore-mentioned New Romantic trousers, i.e. Jodhpurs, some turbans, tropical jackets and one set of magnificent handlebar moustaches. Prince Charles very friendly and relaxed as he desribed Camilla on a jewelry binge frenzy in Delhi. Ah, how the other half live, I mused.
Then after fireworks, half of which detonated just under the surface of the lake; the other half most impressively just above, it was back to the day room; quick change; manic packing, followed by a manic two hour car journey on unlit pot-holed roads into the oncoming glare of big bus headlights on full beam. Well, she did promise me first class travel!