Early in our book, there is a scene that takes place in a club. Not the sort of club la Nolan goes to boogie to phat beats by Chaka Demus & Pliers, but a proper Gentleman’s club. The sort with fine dining and comfortable furniture dating back to the middle ages.
A few weeks ago, I was invited to a business lunch to discuss a new project. The man who set it up works in the City of London and it appears, does this sort of thing all the time. Very nice.
When I mentioned this to Candice by e-mail, the response asked a question that hadn’t crossed my mind.
OMG. What are you going to wear?
Hmmm. Well, I’d sort of got it in mind I’d wear my nice interview jacket from Next, black trousers and shoes and a shirt.
We then proceeded to have a discussion where I learned that I might not actually be suitably attired for such an occasion. It didn’t help that the dress code according to the website was “city smart casual” which means nothing to me. A dark jacket, or better still a suit would have been better, “as long as it’s not too old”. Too old? Why does that matter? Something to do with style apparently. I don’t have it but was ominously told that “anyone can be styled”.
Anyway, out of the three of us at the lunch, I was the second smartest which was fine. The scruffiest, wearing all the right clothes but looking rumpled, was the guy who was a member so obviously it didn’t matter that much. Having said this, the people at the other tables were pretty uniformly dressed in black or dark grey suits.
The club itself was very nice. In The Book, we describe wood panelling and leather chairs and that’s pretty much what I got. Service was discrete but polite with the members name being remembered as well as the (presumably) good red wine he favoured, a bottle of which was proffered within a few minutes of arrival.
Basically, I can see why Gareth would like it and how Kate would feel like a fish out of water. Lunch lasted three hours for a start and could be described as “convivial” even a bit old-fashioned. If you are a go-getting young business woman, learning to slow down and get the best out of it will be a challenge. At least, unlike Kate, I didn’t need to nip off to the loo to jot down notes in case the alcohol dulled my memory. Mind you, if I had, the loos were very nice as well.
Anyway, last week, I described this to Candice and mentioned that I’d brought back a souvenir. I meant a postcard from the club advertising the facilities, not a nipple tassel as she suggested.
What sort of place does she think I frequent?