I am aware that I have slightly short changed you on the real gossip in my last blog entry. First I made such a song and dance about the castle party and then I don’t tell you about it. I will now fill you in. The castle party itself however does not lend itself to juicy gossip. Everything was fine and comme il faut. I talked to people, people talked to me, we sipped our champagne, everything was very polite, very civilised. I went to bed with the feeling of having done a job – the networking job – well and to my best ability.
The next day the readings continued. I had by now figured out that to be really in the in-crowd I should have rented a bicycle. That’s at least what everyone else had done – because it is quite easy to cycle from the hotels to the television studio where the readings take place and then from the studios to the lake, which is about 20 minutes bike ride, so too far to walk. By the time I understood the must-have factor of the bicycle, there was none left to be rented. Of course you can get a taxi, but the Woerthersee is big and I wanted to go swimming where everybody else went swimming- in order not to repeat my last year’s ordeal of swimming all alone. Thus, when one of the guys there offered to take me in his car down to the lakes I was more than happy to accept. Then in the evening he gave me a lift to the restaurant where everyone met. We had delightful conversations. Afterwards I asked him to drop me back to my hotel. Which he very kindly did. I was terribly pleased with myself. Well done me – I thought – I am accepted, I belong. I had reached the zenith of my networking crash course. Where do you go from here? Only downhill!
It wasn’t until I sat at the airport waiting for my flight back to London, when suddenly it hit me sideways. “What would people – the world – now be thinking of me?! Continuously getting in and out of this car! What on earth did it look like?!” My teenage daughter would have been probably – hopefully! – more streetwise in safeguarding her reputation. I couldn’t sleep for two nights, even wondering if I should confess to my husband about a non-committed act of adultery. Better confessing to something before a rumour tsunami would sweep across the channel and cause eternal havoc. I was gloriously descending into the paranoia abyss when luckily a good friend appeared on the scene. I cried on her shoulder. She was pretty unimpressed. “What are you fussing!” She barely raised an eyebrow. ” Better to be talked about than not at all!” The ultimate form of networking.