The holiday planner
Georgie is in the first ecstasy of holiday planning. Cambodia! Everyone is talking about Cambodia – please can they go to Shinta Mani Wild? “Darling, it is beyond fabulous! It’s like a luxury safari in the jungle with Jackie O. You can arrive by road or helicopter or – as you’re such an action man – a zip-line into the Landing Zone Bar.”
She chirrups about the 15 tents suspended over rivers and waterfalls, the expedition boats into Cambodia’s last estuarine ecosystem and the food sustainably sourced from the surrounding forests. Fergus says it is all marvellous, but £1,900 a night? The farm is not doing that well, old thing. Thus begins the descent of Georgie’s dreams to reality.
Fergus and the labrador would actually like to stay at home, sniffing spring in the frosty air. Perhaps a weekend skiing if the Cholmondleys invite them to their chalet in Méribel – “Although the thing is, Fergus, we are renting it out now. It has to wash its face. God knows what is going to happen after March 29.”
Georgie is not to be defeated. She’s done Christmas – the tree, the stockings, the turkey and Fergus’s frightful mother; she has done eight shoot lunches of various brown-stewed hues (with mash); she has provided 80 sausage rolls for the Chipping Foxhounds meet in their field, plus hot bull shots steaming with vodka incubated in her flask. No one has helped her. She, Georgie, bloody well deserves a hol.
It has to be The Datai in Langkawi, Max Hastings says it is The Best Hotel in the World and who is to gainsay The Great Man? She dreams of her beach villa, of jolly lunches at the beach bar with other country-nice-brits – it is quite the place to be, and in 2017 they did a mercy drop of rosé, so no worries – and “Darling, you could play golf.” And she can read Ben Macintyre on her Kindle. Now, do they have a companion ticket for business class?
She provided 80 sausage rolls for the Foxhounds meet. She deserves a hol