“Witty, hilarious and insightful” – Mark Prichard
“We need more eccentrics like this in the world” – Mrs C Lomax
Broken Lunch is an intimate and fast-moving memoir, recalling Simon Dewhurst’s privileged and eccentric upbringing in an upper-class English family, after the Second World War. With no time for misery or self-flagellation, the narrative glides seamlessly from one hilarious disaster to the next.
Simon’s exploits including as a soldier, ski instructor, film extra, actor and cinema projectionist, take us from London in the Swinging Sixties to Scandinavia, North America and finally to darkest Africa. The ingredients for the best memoirs are many – Simon’s are usually blue, hilarious and possibly worrying.
“It’s a good read, very funny and his rants are insightful and well expressed” – Amazon Customer
With no truck for political correctness, Simon’s style is light and airy with little moralizing about the meaning of life, but he does enjoy a good rant about the state of the modern world.
About the Author
Simon Dewhurst has led an eclectic life and has had many very different jobs. Among other things he has acted in the theatre and on film, made documentaries, sold Christmas trees door-to-door, worked as a waiter in a fish and chip restaurant, taught skiing for forty years and driven a milk float in a film about John Lennon.
He was first published at the tender age of eleven, when he won $10 for a short story published in the UK Catholic Times.
Since that early start, his writing career has gone on to include Secrets of Better Skiing and now Broken Lunch, which is his first full length book. He has also written many articles for the internet on such diverse subjects as ‘crane proximity sensors’ and ‘solid wheelbarrow wheels’.
As a film maker, Simon’s documentaries include ‘The Gentleman Factory’ and ‘Skifun’.
Simon is 71 years of age and currently lives near Liverpool, UK where he writes and goes rock climbing.
The earliest film clip I can be sure of was aged three and a half, sitting in grubby sand pit with my two and half year old sister, Gemma, at Stoke Hall. There was a thunderstorm brewing and we were being bitten by ants and this for me was a film clip with no talking. She says she remembers me saying that it was safe in the sandpit as lightening never strikes children playing in sandpits, but I suspect that this was too much knowledge too soon. Later I was in the nursery sticking a poker into a coal fire, and watching with infantile fascination as it got red hot. Cut to a few minutes later when I offered the hot end of the poker to Gemma, who took it, thinking, I guess, we were going to pull a cracker. Cut to Gemma screaming, having her hand wrapped up in loose white gauze bandages. I can’t remember what happened to me afterwards but it probably wasn’t very pleasant. For some reason Gemma can recollect the whole incident with amazing clarity.
Later still I was in the garden at the edge of the lily pond, reaching with a stick for a piece of wood someone had stuck a nail into; it was floating just too far away and I fell into the water. Next I was screaming at full volume and banging on the front door. Somehow all my clothes had disappeared save for a woolen Chilprufe vest, which was now sagging with the weight of the water well below my knees. My mother and Mary, the cook, laughed and laughed when they opened the door, and I just screamed and screamed. I guess they were relieved that I hadn’t chopped my leg off with an axe.
As far as I can remember my childhood was a happy spoilt existence, punctuated by much laughter and my own innate curiosity that only lasted for as long as it took me to pull a toy apart, find I couldn’t repair it, and then throw it to the bottom of the toy box. To counter this was the continual and boring imposition of good manners (my father), religion and horses (my mother), and rough and ready discipline from Mary (the cook). She would often chase us round the kitchen table with a brush or a mop for the smallest of misdemeanors shouting “I’ll tell your father and your mother about you now then!” If she caught one of us, we would be bundled upstairs and shut in the broom cupboard for twenty minutes, where on my own I learnt quite happily to contemplate and ponder the mysteries of life.