Do you know what I was recently paid to do, once a fortnight? I wrote celebrity parodies for Your Weekend and Stuff. I know, right? Pretending to be Celine Dion, Nigella Lawson and Camilla Parker Bowles was probably the jolliest job I’ve ever had and trust me, I’ve been around the block a few times.
But then COVID-19 slamdunked the media business. Newspapers cut their columnists loose, and I spent a couple of days drifting around the house in those free paper slippers you get from hotels.
Still, why stop writing? I don’t know if anyone needs a Royal parody series during a global pandemic but it turns out, it does me the world of good to write one, between cold moments of existential gloom. I know this because the highlight of my first week in lockdown was trying a new head on the vacuum cleaner.
So here it is, what nobody asked for: A Right Royal Karori Lockdown. It imagines what might happen if the Windsors were quarantined to my neighbourhood – a distant, famously benign New Zealand suburb, with more poodle mixes and Suzuki Swifts than the Queen’s had state banquets.
I really hope it triggers a giggle or two for you during this weirdest month of our lives. I’ll update it as often as possible, even though locked-down life is weirdly busy (only yesterday I spent ten minutes soaping my root vegetables).
You’re welcome to comment on posts, Twitter or Facebook. If you’re an ardent Royalist, I can only apologise. Console yourself knowing it’s all very made up; especially the quotes. Also, let’s be honest – this blog is pretty niche and the Queen will never read it, though let’s not underestimate Harry and Meghan.
If you’re a local, you might recognise versions of places and people you know. The truly savvy will recognise the distinctive penwomanship of star illustrator Sarah Laing – a true Karorian and dazzling talent. She’ll be doing me an immense service by contributing drawings, especially as she’s busy keeping a graphic COVID-19 diary. There are many quietly talented people around here so if I can, I’ll link to them.
If you’ve never visited Wellington’s largest suburb, and sampled its delights: welcome to Karori, perhaps the least remarkable postcode on Earth. Until now.