Mr F and I have been a little too much at the trough this past week. First we were in up in County Meath enjoying a very well fed weekend with friends at their country cottage. Homemade scones, eggs from contented chickens, you know the kind of thing. And I did very little to work off the calories except improve my grasp of Irish geography. How many of us can identify, with confidence,  County Offaly or County Monaghan?

Well then we came back to Dublin and met up with a friend who was shooting through on his way home from a golfing holiday. ‘Book somewhere for lunch’ he said, and I did. I chose the restaurant for its mutually convenient location but I omitted to check whether there was any need to fast before eating there. The hors d’oeuvres were big enough to be entrees  – and believe me, I’m no faintheart  – the entrees were big enough to feed a scout troop and, and, between the two courses the waiter arrived with a little extra something. But I’m not talking about a couple of lightly dressed salad leaves, or a scoop of lemon sorbet. This was a steaming basin of kidney soup. We didn’t eat it, of course. Well, just a spoonful. I think they must have had a long position on kidneys. Maybe they had a poor turnout for  Bloomsday.

So after that we really should have gone home and skipped dinner, but the sun was shining and friends were in the mood to barbecue and way led on to way. But I swear all I did was nibble on a sausage.

Nevertheless my waistband is now showing signs of stress so I have to ease off the grub in preparation for next week. To mark publication day of my new book my publishers have promised me a swish lunch. Or did they say ‘a Swiss lunch’? Suddenly I have a horrible vision of yodelling waiters and bubbling vats of melted Emmenthal.

Note to file: pack Alka-Seltzer.

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