Meadowcroft puts his head through the Breakfast Room window (fortunately, it is open at the time) to inform me that my drive is “befangled with ballistics”. I rush outside to see what the fuss is about and am met by an extraordinary sight: the drive is occupied from the Lodge, past the lake, around my carriage sweep and under my porte cochère by jeeps, tanks and missile launchers. It reminds me of the chilly Moscow afternoon when (for reasons I need not enter into here) I found myself obliged to join the party taking the salute in Red Square.
Just as I am thinking of returning for the Library revolver, a bearded figure in a tin hat emerges from the turret of the largest tank. It bounds forward to greet me and turns out to be Heath. “Hope you don’t mind. I’ve bought a few friends just in case you have badgers.”
Lord Bonkers was Liberal MP for Rutland South-West 1906-10.