Wednesday, 23 November 2011


We appear to be in Epsom of Epsom Derby fame. It's the middle of the night, the streets are empty and mist-shrouded. Everything looks very romantic.

We've just spent the evening with Hannah Waddingham rehearsing for the concert on Sunday. She's singing a song I wrote for Blast called The Most Deluded Dream, which has only ever been sung in public once. We hope she'll be able to perform the song. It's looking like she might be called up to film an episode of Doctor's, which obviously she can't turn down. 

She was on good form tonight and we did a lot of laughing, which brought on one or two coughing fits. I think the change in weather hasn't been great for my whooping cough recovery process. All this dampness in the air is no good for a Victorian ague. I wish it would just go away!

The rest of the day has been spent sending countless emails, printing pages of music, writing programme notes, practising the piano and generally faffing about the concert. I can't really tell if I'm excited or just terrified...

350 years ago, and a group of Pepys' work colleagues and their families congregated at The Dolphin pub. They ate, drank, sang, danced, flirted, played games, gambled and had a whale of a time, and we're astonished to be landed with a bill of well oven 4l, including tips for the musicians. 

Pepys returned home to find his wife had hired a new maid, one Sarah, who was described by our hero as "pretty." I fear for her...

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