First of all let me apologise to you sincerely for not having written before now. The fact is that I was very preoccupied with the play Deathtrap which I performed at the Stables Theatre, Hastings, in April. As soon as I had done that I came back to my book - which you will be delighted to hear is very near completion - and so I have been totally absorbed with other things. However, now that Death and the Black Pyramid is one chapter off being finished, my conscience pricked me and so here I am.
The play was a great success and we performed to full houses every night. On the Saturday night we had a waiting list of ten hoping to get returned tickets, so that will give you some idea of its popularity. I thoroughly enjoyed being in it, particularly mixing with the rest of the cast, all of whom were a delight to work with. The picture is of me in my role as the eccentric Dutch clairvoyante. It appeared in the local paper and I think it is rather a good one.
Several of my friends came to see it and on the Sunday after the last show we went to my friend Pamela Wilding's for lunch. She is a marvellous cook and I can tell you that we dined magnificently. Needless to say I took a taxi there!
The next big event was a rather sad occasion. It was the funeral of an old friend of mine from the Mayfield days. However, despite the solemnity of the occasion, it was a pleasure to see so many of the old Mayfield Players - as our drama group used to be called - all gathered together for the occasion: Alison Mackenzie, Mandy Robinson, Maureen Lyle, Amanda Carroll to name but a few. Bruce Fardell - whose funeral it was - had been publicity manager and had also acted for the Players and it was great to see St. Dunstan's - Mayfield's parish church - packed out in his honour.
In the evening his family had arranged for a jazz band to play at the Five Ashes pub and it was most pleasant to sit outside catching up with all one's old friends and hearing the music in the background. I had a long chat with the Vicar of Mayfield, with Alison Mackenzie and with my pal of long standing, Victor Briggs. In fact, despite the sadness at losing Bruce, he was seen off in great style.
Recently two of my American readers came and took me out to lunch - namely Ron and Barb Meldrum. They have invited me out to America next year and I think I will probably accept their invitation. Believe it nor not, they live in a place called Moscow in ID, which I take it must be short for Indiana. If it's wrong please don't hesitate to correct me*.
Finally I am enclosing a photograph of one of my readers, Sue Naylor, with her husband and five grandchildren. I think she must be a strong competitor for the most glamorous grandmother contest, as I can honestly say she looks absolutely marvellous to me.
So that's all my news for the present. Don't forget to look out for Death and the Black Pyramid some time next year. I'll let you know the publication date just as soon as I have it myself. Meanwhile take very good care of yourselves and, once again, accept my apologies for the lateness of this letter.
*P.S: It's short for Idaho.