From the diary of Rishi Sunak, Britain’s most recent prime minister
PEOPLE ask me, ‘Rishi, how did you and Akshata meet?’ and it is a lovely, romantic, relatable story about two ordinary people, one of whom is a multi-millionaire.
And, since love is more important than material things here at Christmas while we’re trying to squeeze incomes to keep inflation down, I thought this would be a lovely time to share our story.
It begins in 2005, when I attended Stanford University in California while remaining very British and down-to-earth and insisting on mugs of tea. It was there my eyes first met those of an enchanting creature across the quad. ‘Who is that?’ I gasped.
‘It’s Akshata Murthy,’ sighed my roommate, who for a small stipend was also my friend, ‘as you well know. You’ve been following her since day one. We pattern our days around where she’ll be. I lift you on my shoulders so you can look through her class’s windows.’
But I barely heard a word he said because I was lost in this gorgeous vision’s dazzling smile. She wasn’t smiling at that particular moment, indeed she was scowling, but I could project and forecast a smile based on the data provided.
Eventually, and quite by chance, we met. ‘You’ve passed both security checks and credit checks,’ she told me, ‘and my father likes your British citizenship. Go on. Impress me.’
Smitten, I reeled off my achievements: Goldman Sachs, a first from Oxford, head boy at Winchester. Her expression didn’t change. I mentioned my ambition to become prime minister and it curdled with disgust.
‘Of India?’ she said. No, Britain, I explained. ‘Prime minister of Britain. Lord above. You might as well tell me you would like to keep a shop. Still, we don’t need two people with real ambition in a partnership.’
That day our hearts met, our 30-year plan was faxed over by her father and signed off by me, and I’ve not looked back since.
It’s a story that’s above all aspirational, so Britain, when you find yourselves facing hard times for the next 18 months guaranteed, remember you too could do better like I did. Akshata has requested I add that she hates Christmas and has married down.