As you can see, I’m still very well, although my foot’s a bit swollen. It’s an odd feeling to be facing the most invasive operation of my life when the sun’s out and I’m looking forward to a glass of chilled white, but that’s the way it is at the moment. Having said that, I’m reminded that I’ve been for my last run for a while and climbing Everest is probably not a good idea until after they’ve done a puncture repair job on my mitral valve.
The North Korea Journal, my daily record of last year’s extraordinary trip to North Korea is being printed as I write and is set for publication on September 19th. That’s only a couple of weeks after I’ve been under the knife, which is why I had, very reluctantly, to cancel the North Korea Journal book tour in October. Many apologies to all who’d booked tickets. You’ll just have to go and see Mick Jagger instead.
1969 was quite a year. Not only did man walk on the Moon for the first time, but both the Clangers and Monty Python were born within a month of each other. And both are still employing me. I record the next batch of Clanger narrations later in the autumn, and, in the meantime, I’ve helped assemble some weird, wacky archive material for Python’s 50th birthday on Radio Four. Python as you’ve never heard it before.
I must obey doctor’s orders and give my repaired heart a month or two’s rest from work, but it won’t be easy for someone who gets twitchy taking a week off ! Watch out for Around The Sitting Room in Eighty Days or Boiled Eggs, an Illustrated History.
Enjoy what’s left of the summer once BA and Ryanair have been at it.