Wednesday, July 01, 2009


‘But Frances, what exactly were you so upset about last night ? ask Fausto kindly. ‘Huh?’ ‘One minute you were drinking your beer, the next minute you were shouting like a crazy person.’ Ah yes. Sarkozy, of course. We were sitting by the Loire on a rug, drinking cans of Braubergen and watching the river flow past. Enrique asked me what I thought about Sarkozy’s latest cheeky little sound-bite on the burka; I saw red. It took me a long time to work out where I stand on the subject of Muslim women’s dress for two reasons. One is that I grew up in a very Muslim area and went to school with Muslim girls- there I learnt to look at the person behind the headscarf. You have to learn, because on a purely personal level someone with their face covered can be slightly –slightly!- daunting. It’s not very hard, though.