Jim Haynes newsletters

Newsletter No. 714
An End of the Year Report
6 December 2010

This so-called report starts the 6th of December, but may well be re-dated before it goes out to the world. Dear old 2010 is rapidly coming to an exciting end. On the 7th (tomorrow night), I will attend the opening night of old friend, Ennio Marchetto, who will be performing his magical one-man show. He has given me 20 tickets and I have made them available to support Katy Masuga's London Marathon run in support of Amnesty International. (Katy needs to raise at least 2,500 pounds sterling for Amnesty International.) If you have never seen an Ennio Marchetto performance, please do yourself a favor and do so at your first opportunity. I have seen him perform maybe a hundred or more times and each time he produces tears of pure joy. He is a global asset and may he never retire.

Justice On the 8th of December, my lawyer, Jean-Pierre Cahen, is in court once again in my long-running saga with Emile Gouiran. The last time Maitre Cahen was in court on my behalf, he won. May he continue to have success. And may this almost 20-year legal battle soon end with victory for our side. May justice prevail!

Rituals On the 9th of December, if weather conditions do not keep them in Scotland, I will meet Sheila Colvin and John Calder at the Gare du Nord and we will dine in the Terminus Nord and have another feast. Mary Folliet will be joining us. She will have an exhibition of her collages in Le Canton (5 rue Gozlin in the 5th arrondisemont).

Gallery: Last January, the year began with an exhibition of Mary Folliet's Collages, then Lauren Goldenberg was next with her photographs of the John Calder poetry reading in Shakespeare & Co. Kate Masuga's friend, Kate Grindley, had an exhibition of her photographs. Catherine Bertaud was next, thanks to Richard Allen, with her paintings. Then a brief reprise of Chuck Rapoport's iconic photographs. Natalia Shkola's photographs followed. Not sure who will be next. Maybe John Calder's drawings. Or Susi Wyss with her drawings.

Health: I am still here. Thanks to doctors Frank Slattery and Claude Zeitoun...

Trips: No trip to Bangkok and Calcutta in November. But I did attend the Edinburgh Festival this past August (and stayed with Ruth and Martin). I also attended the Wigtown Book Festival the end of September (tavelling to Edinburgh via a ferry from Belgium). It was my first time to visit South West Scotland - thanks to Claudia Monteiro and Adrian Turpin. Claudia and her team of assistants cooked a fabulous meal as we attempted to have a Paris Sunday night salon in Wigtown. It was a big success! A quick trip to London in early October to attend a funeral ceremony for old friend, Susan Miles. I stayed with a dear friend, Lindsey Bareham. Another Frankfurt Book Fair in early October. Stayed once again with Brigitte and Erich Bernhard. This Book Fair was extra nice because Tania and Carsten Hansen also stayed with Brigette and Erich. Finally I went to St Pons in the South of France to have wonderful lunch with Sabine & Rainer Kolmel and with Barbara & Scott Griffith.

Trips next year: USurely Edinburgh in August and Frankfurt in October. Beyond that, who knows? My old friend, John Flattau, wants to travel from New York to Paris and then the two of us plan to go somewhere warm. I still wish to travel to Odessa.

The Sunday Dinners: They continue... Better than ever. Thanks to Cathy Monnet, Mary Bartlett, Antonia Hoogewerf, Galina Prokhorova, Michael Boone, and many others.

Theatre: Old friend, Ennio Marchetto, blew in from Venice and I organized a group of about 25 friends to attend the opening night, 7th December. He was as fantastic as ever. Everyone was knocked-out. And we raised almost 400 euros for Amnesty International. The producer, Gerard Drouot, kindly hosted a reception after the performance. Delicious food.

New Year's Eve: We are hosting a dinner here in Tombe Issoire. Katy Masuga is cooking. All funds we raise from this event will go to Amnesty International. Katy will be running in the London Marathon next April for Amnesty International and we must raise 2,500 pounds sterling for this sponsorship. (Anyone who wishes to support Katy is encouraged to do so.) After the dinner here, we will shift to the Swan Bar (165 Blvd Montparnasse) for champage, dancing and celebrating the New Year. It is still possible to reserve your place here.

Visitors: Many friends stayed this year. It was great as always to have Martin Walker stay the night on his way to and from Washington, D.C. and even to have his and Julia's lovely daughter, Kate, crash a night here. Natalia Shkola continues to pop over from London every so often and she is always a joy to have here. Right now, a romantic comedy is filming in Paris with the working title: St. Germain des Prés. One of the producers, Jeffrey Maness, is staying here now. There is a good possibility that I will have a tiny role. All the team is from Seattle. Don Todd and his son, Aaron, stayed this summer. Martin Belk and Jonathan Pryce stayed a few days recently. Martin continues to publish One, a superb magazine. (I continue to write for it.) And Angela Bartie graced the atelier recently.

Television: France 24 broadcast an item a few weeks ago about the Sunday dinners in French and English. Not sure what the repercussions of this might be. The After Eight commercial continues to run in Great Britain and Ireland.

Articles: The Sydney Morning Herald and the Melbourne Age ran a superb article by Susan Johnson (27 February), producing an unending number of Aussies for the Sunday dinners. Fredrik Drevon has written an article in Aftenposten (27 October), an Oslo newspaper, producing instantly lots of visitors from Norway. (Fredrik is also writing a book about the bookshop, Shakespeare & Co.) There was also an article in the Italian newspaper, Repubblica, in March. This meant lots of dinner guests from Italy.

Books: I still read. And most of the authors I read are also friends. Alan Furst continues to produce excellent novels, all set in Europe just before and during the early years of World War II. His most recent, Spies of the Balkans, is one of his best. Cara Black was recently in Paris researching her next thriller, Murder in the 14th. I enjoyed reading Jenny Diski's The Sixties and am reading her collection of essays, A View from the Bed. Martin Walker has published four novels set in the South of France and I have read two of them. Excellent. I have read Christopher Hitchens' autobiography, Hitch-22. And am also reading a collection of his essays entitled Love, Poverty & War.

Passions: Life, I love it. I call it a soap opera. Every day there is a new chapter. Comedy. Tragedy. People come and go. They do stupid things. They do amazing things. They are heroic. They are generous. They are wonderful. They are sometimes criminal and vulgar. I am constantly amazed. This morning I received a package containing smoked salmon from a couple in Canada. They had dined here in October with their son. They wanted to thank me.

OK, I think this will do. I can always think later that I should have added this or that or cut something. But to hell with it. This is it. May 2011 be great for you and for our dear old tired Planet Earth. I hope all our paths cross in 2011.

Hugs & love,



Jim Haynes
December 2010

Atelier A-2,
83 rue de la tombe Issoire,
75014 Paris France




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