It’s been a slightly odd week so far. A post I wrote on Monday for the Guardian’s Northerner section about Ramona’s invitation to dine with the Queen generated quite a lot of attention in Romania. A steady stream of reporters has contacted me, asking to be put in touch with her, and then yesterday a TV crew doorstepped her family – ie they turned up without warning. That caused some serious panic for Ramona, thousands of miles away in Manchester – and by extension me – but ultimately it was all fine. (See the clip below)
It was quite odd to see their report online today – doubly so since it was largely made up of my content, used without permission….images and video footage I made of Ramona on our trip to Romania, which they have nicked from my multimedia pieces, and photos lifted from my Elvira and Me book pdf. Her family then showed prints I sent them from Friday’s town hall trip, a copy of the book and a copy of the Big Issue in the North with Ramona on the cover.
All quite bizarre but unlike on previous occasions when I’ve had a dealings with broadcasters, i don’t actually mind because they had the manners to at least credit my name and website. And at least this time it’s a positive story about Roma – I don’t think there are many of those in Romanian media. The photo from my Guardian piece has been reproduced all over the shop, but unlike my darker recent experiences, at least this time it is being used in the correct context. So I guess I don’t really have much to complain about. It’s just the latest chapter in the amazing journey of Elvira.