After many years abroad, I moved to a small village in Cornwall. The locals immediately took to me because I seemed foreign and exotic. The plump, middle-aged woman at the Post Office asked me if I would take on the leading male role in a production that was going to be put on at the village hall. She would play the leading lady. I was too ashamed to admit that I wouldn’t be able to remember the lines. Instead I told her my schedule was already packed, mumbling a lie about a book to write. She blushed as if I’d slapped her. Perhaps another year, I suggested, though I knew my memory would be even worse by then. She shook her head. My standing in the community would never be the same again.