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Jude Potts
Jan 27, 2022
In Week 1 - Openings
Ophelia’s Beauty Secrets - Secret Sanctuary’s VIP treatment ***The following extract was first serialised in the Sunday World culture supplement, June 21st 2021. Some names in this memoir have been changed to protect the innocent. The guilty can kiss my peachy butt, they brought this on themselves.*** If you are reading this, one of two things is true: Either things have become too hot to handle and I am bankrolling a new life, somewhere the weather suits my clothes. Or I am the best looking dust ever scattered at sea. Either way, Ophelia Lyndon-Sharpe is no more. Sad, because it’s the name I've kept longest since I first chose a new name at age fourteen. I’d become quite attached to this one. But of course Ophelia Lyndon-Sharpe wasn’t just a name, it was a figure hugging, designer disguise with matching handbag and killer heels. A fabulous lie. This is my memoir. It is mostly true but bear with me, Sweetie, old habits die hard. Everyone’s heard of Ophelia’s Secret Sanctuary, of course. Wellness Retreat and Beauty Spa to the London elite. My pre-BAFTA buff up is de rigueur, darling, for stars of stage and screen. Everyone wants to look their absolute best when giving their ‘ so pleased for you’ looks to camera when some other fool waltzes off with their prize. And my Instant Calmer: Destress and Decompress package has literally saved the lives of a dozen Blue Chip high flyers. But there is more to me than my gold leaf facial and diamond dust body scrub. You would be amazed at the secrets that get shared at the spa. I do try not to pry, of course. But the trouble is I am just so terribly, terribly nosey. It is actually quite lucrative. Some people have secrets they would sell a kidney to keep quiet. I haven’t made anyone go quite that far, but I have made some serious surgical incisions in the wallets of a few of my more indiscreet clients. Naturally I kept the receipts. For insurance purposes. I know there are people who might decide my lips need to be permanently sealed. So, in the event of my untimely death, and all that jazz. My mother may not have raised a paragon of virtue, but she didn’t raise a fool. Now it’s time to cash in my policy, as it were. As Mae West said, ‘Keep a diary, and one day it’ll keep you’. Everyone has secrets don’t they, Darling? Keep it under your hat but I am not a natural blonde! Who knew? Tomorrow I may be an unnatural redhead, next week pretty in pink, to make the boys wink. But always, always fabulous. Let me tell you a secret, Sweetie. No, not the one about the Education Minister and his research assistant, or the Junior Health Minister’s personal ...prescription. Naughty! Those secrets cost. Through the nose, you might say, in one case. No. It’s this: People don't notice the plain truth, if you show them a fabulous lie. I’ve always loved glamour. A little sparkle of magic that tricks the eye. It’s helped me out of a scrape or two, I can tell you. It made perfect sense to open my little Sanctuary, share my secrets with a few exclusive, hand picked friends. And now it makes sense to share their secrets with you. Let’s take a tour...
Jude Potts
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