So we're wading through the boring parts of the book proposal that Crown decided at the last minute that it was too classy to publish, finding out lots about ex-nanny Melissa Dumas and not a whole lot about her employer "M." It was interesting, though, to read about the goings-on in London's Kabbalah Centre. Melissa's first meeting with her new employer took place there, and while it was short, it wasn't exactly sweet.
We entered the old, decrepit building through the basement level. The walls were dirty and dank. The air felt swampy and the carpets were stained and dirty. Kids laughed and screamed and chased each other through the rooms. I couldn't believe Madonna would walk through this place, much less let her kids play here. On our way to the main room we passed a kitchen where cooks were preparing a meal, and I shuddered and made a mental note to myself—never eat here.
A service and a meal transpire before Melissa is finally introduced to her charges' mother.
Madonna looked straight into my eyes. "You've got great kids," I said, trying to be as warm and friendly as possible. Her eyebrows rose a tiny fraction. "Thanks," she responded in a clipped tone, then looked back at Audrey [the nanny Melissa was to replace] as if to say, "Got it?" Audrey nodded and Madonna turned on her heel and returned to her seat at the head table. That was it for an interview with my prospective employer.
Believe it or not, that word is the only thing "M" is quoted as saying in the entire 75-page proposal.