It was a warm sultry day last spring when I heard about a small 12-year-old girl who had been raped and consequently infected with the HIV/Aids virus. I was in South Africa with Elton John and David Furnish to see at the most basic grassroots level how their Aids charity works.
Far and away the most interesting passage in this evening's lecture by Alexander Lebedev came when describing his background in the Soviet Union. It amounted to a public settling of accounts with a past blighted by being born into, and growing up inside, a totalitarian society in which individuals were unable to exercise free choice.
A hotel complex in Ukraine, belonging to Alexander and Evgeny Lebedev, the owners of The Independent and the London Evening Standard, has been raided by police in an apparent row over the preservation of playwright Anton Chekhov's nearby house.
At a private party organised by Elton John last night, the mother of one showed off her figure in a stunning Alberta Ferretti silk dress with a plunging neckline, alongside an A-list guest list of glamorous stars. Liz Hurley in plunging dress was accompanied by designer Patrick Cox at the event, held in honour of publisher Alexander Lebedev in London.