Page 130. " her Genghis-Khan-at-height-of-evil voice "
Genghis Khan
Public DomainGenghis Khan

  Genghis Khan was a 13th-century Mongol ruler who came to power through a relentlessly savage military campaign spanning 3 decades.

His name is synonymous with destruction on a massive scale, although he is also credited with bringing a new order to the Silk Road and (with his grandson Kublai Khan) re-uniting China under the Yuan dynasty.


Page 135. " knocked an open bottle of extra virgin olive oil over on to my River Café cookbook "

The River Café is a Michelin-starred restaurant in Hammersmith, London.  It specialises in Italian food, and its recipe books have been highly popular for many years.

Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall both started their careers at the River Café.

The River Cafe
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeThe River Café - Credit: Ben Harris-Roxas


Page 146. " like Gulf War missiles going 'Fzzzzzz whoossssh' through Baghdad hotel corridors "

Tomahawk Missile fired against Iraq
Public DomainTomahawk Missile fired against Iraq - Credit: PH3 BRAD DILLON
The Diary was published just a few years after the first Gulf War, when Western nations had been stunned to hear of the new technical genius of the ordnance deployed in their name.  Missiles could travel hundreds of miles and find an Iraqi target to within a few metres. 

In these days of satnav, that achievement seems less extraordinary, but at the time it was impressive enough to justify Bridget's hyperbole.

Page 148. " Your face. You look like Barbara Cartland. "


Barbara Cartland
Creative Commons AttributionBarbara Cartland - Credit: Sotti


 Barbara Cartland was an English romantic novelist with an unrelenting love of pink attire and a startling approach to make-up. Her enthusiastic applications of vivid blue eyeshadow, fake lashes and several coats of lipstick earned her as much notoriety as her books.