Culture Shock and Canapés
Pamela O’Cuneen spent 25 years in Africa and the Caribbean as a diplomat’s wife. Her new book, Culture Shock and Canapés, tells how she was propelled far beyond her Australian girlhood, and the social whirl of London, to the heart-breaking struggles of the African communities, providing a rare glimpse behind the walls of an embassy.
It shows Pamela’s life was fraught with the same insecurities as most wives experiences in their lives, yet this is deftly interspersed with encounters of warfare, famine, crises of international relations, feats of diplomacy…and the occasional disastrous dinner party! We witness Pamela regularly having to uproot her life, to fit in with the demands of her husband’s work, and the anxieties caused by becoming a ‘trailing spouse’.
Pamela wrote a piece that appeared in The Times on 30th April entitled ‘Being an embassy wife isn’t just smiles and canapés’.
“Realise your role as a hostess is not one of mere party-planner, but facilitating good relationships. You may be facilitating decisions that will influence the lives of a nation.” – link
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