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  • Jancis Robinson
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  • Jancis Robinson
8 Jan 2014

Well that's the last time I have a completely clear day and evening in my diary… This rare phenomenon applied to yesterday when I planned to make progress with all sorts of desk jobs.

Instead of which I spent most of it in University College Hospital's A&E department, having been rushed there from my north London doctor's surgery. Turns out the extreme dizziness, light-sensitivity and nausea that suddenly came over me yesterday morning is nothing more sinister than something I had never heard of, labyrinthitis, a viral infection of the inner ear that disturbs your balance. I'm back home now but, most unfortunately, will have to bow out of this year's concentrated London season of burgundy 2012 tastings that begins in earnest this morning. I'm so glad I had a week in Burgundy last month to enjoy hundreds of these rather charming wines in situ.

Fortunately we have an expanded and experienced team at, including four of us who have sailed through the Master of Wine exams. Julia, who arrived back from Australia last night, and Richard - who were planning to attend some of the tastings anyway - are kindly covering for me.

Luckily, Julia had a good night's sleep last night - as did I, despite spending much of yesterday in a rather dozy state. I plan to take it easy for the rest of this week, but would welcome any advice from anyone who has also suffered from labyrinthitis. (See comments box below.)

Funny thing is that the rather strange way I feel now - a bit dizzy - is probably how most people think we wine writers spend most of our time.