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LIZ JONES’S DIARY: In which I have a moment of madness in Mallorca

LIZ JONES’S DIARY: In which I have a moment of madness in Mallorca

So… After my abortive, upsetting evening at Ronnie Scott’s in Soho, when I was rudely blanked by the man I was in love with 17 years ago, and have always (and not that secretly, unfortunately) hankered after, I sent that text to David. At 10pm. ‘Fancy meeting up for a drink?’ Which in anyone’s books is a ‘booty call’.

I pressed send, the first flute of champagne in six months having gone to my head, and sat and waited, on my own, at my little candlelit table in the club. No reply. David was probably in a stupor. Or ignoring me. I left the club and summoned an Uber back to my hotel. ‘Can I tell you?’ the driver said. ‘You have a really beautiful face.’ ‘Do I?’ I asked him, still smarting from rejection. ‘One hundred per cent. For a woman in her 50s.’ Needless to say, he didn’t get a tip.

I woke the next day to this: ‘Hi. Of course we can meet for a drink. Where and when?’ Which shows how sweet David is.

I sent this: ‘It was last night. I was in Soho. No worries.’ That will teach him not to have his phone on silent. Still, he is half a length ahead of the Osama Bin Laden lookalike, in that at least he isn’t ignoring me. I’ve just googled Osama’s real name and to my dismay there we are, my name next to his, like the worst sort of marriage. No wonder he was annoyed.

I’m now in Mallorca, on a vegan retreat. It’s the sort of break I’m invited on all the time, due to my job, and the reason I said yes was that this one isn’t wishy-washy but grounded in science: I’m hoping to emerge looking ten years younger just to thwart that taxi driver. Two huge vials of blood were taken from my arm about a week before I flew: almost an arm full. The retreat is run by Tom, a nutritionist and fitness expert, and Alice, his fiancée, an intensive care doctor. I need intensive care. Hook me up and plug me in.

I arrived at the lovely old hotel near the coast and Tom (wow!) took my heavy case. The next day Alice, as beautiful as any of the stars on Grey’s Anatomy, sits me down to go through my blood results. And here’s the thing: while most people would be apprehensive – at the results, at the stethoscope and the blood pressure monitors and heart rate machines – I find, despite being the most nervous person I know, that I could not care less about my health. I’d never be hired by L’Oréal: I’m just not worth it.

It turns out I’m dangerously low in vitamin B12; Alice prescribes two weeks of injections when I’m back. I’m also low in vitamin D. But lowest of all is my BMI: just two notches above what would be normal for an Olympic marathon runner.

I later tell Tom, during our consultation about nutrition, that there is never much in my fridge, and even if there were I wouldn’t bother cooking for myself because there’s no point. He tells me he will devise a shopping list for a healthy vegan diet, and tell me what I need to prepare each day.

Tonight, I’m learning how to cook paella. I tell him to watch out for small fires, which is all I ever manage to make in a kitchen. Tom will also email me every day for a year, asking about my mood, what I’ve eaten. Isn’t that infinitely better than having a boyfriend?

On my second morning, reclining by the pool, I get a text from David. ‘Where is your hotel? I’m thinking of getting on a plane to disturb your peace.’ And just like that, I lose my head. I send a link. What the hell. I’m waxed. I’m starting to relax. My limbs have begun to turn brown. I go for a walk on the beach to exfoliate my feet and spend the rest of the day reaching for my phone, even during the mindfulness and meditation class. That evening, I half expect his small blue eyes to heave expectant, twinkling into view.

The next day, I get this: ‘Ah, that’s a bit too far from the airport.’