One of my favourite films ever is Breakfast at Tiffany’s. It is the only reason Olivia was originally named Holly. Once we moved to France we changed her name. In fact I had doubts straight after the initial euphoria of the birth. And in French Holly sounds like an invitation to go to bed.
One of the things I love about Breakfast at Tiffany’s is the feeling Holly Golightly has when she is in the shop. “Nothing bad can ever happen to you at Tiffany’s,” she says. Yesterday I too experienced that feeling, at Marks & Spencer in Bath.
I realise that in terms of glamour it’s not really right up there. But for some reason as soon as I walk into an M&S I feel calm and secure. The one in Bath is marvellous. Where else can you find blueberries, mixed seeds, pink underwear, over-sized rag dolls and goose-down pilows all under the same roof?
I seem to have passed this passion down to my children. Olivia came back from a trip to the Tiverton the other day raving about “a brilliant shop”. It wasn’t until she showed me the plastic bag that I realised she was talking about my Tiffany’s. Now she talks about little else.
I suppose it must be something to do with growing up in England that makes M&S so special to me. A bit like a grandparent it has always been there; reliable, comforting and reassuringly middle class.
Meanwhile life at my mother’s house is wonderful. I got back from Bath to find all my dirty clothes washed and ironed. It’s rather like living with myself.
Copyright: Helena Frith Powell 2007