Tuesday 9 November

Gabriela Peacock, celebrity nutritionist, hosted a party to launch her book 2 Weeks To Feeling Good, at Knightsbridge’s Pavilion Club.

Guests quizzed me over pre-dinner beverages about the new television show I’m producing next year.

‘What can we expect to see?’ asked Yasmin Le Bon, standing with her daughter Amber, another supermodel, Jodie Kidd, Dame Joan Collins and James Blunt’s wife Sofia.

Dame Joan Collins (above) attended Gabriela Peacock's book launch party where guests quizzed me (Piers Morgan) about my new TV show coming next year

Dame Joan Collins (above) attended Gabriela Peacock’s book launch party where guests quizzed me (Piers Morgan) about my new TV show coming next year

‘Mainly, my head,’ I replied, explaining that US cable news research has established that the more viewers see of an anchor’s own head, the more they apparently like it. ‘As you can imagine,’ I said, ‘I’m very comfortable with this premise.’

I then told them that a few years ago, while I was watching a boxing match on Sylvester Stallone’s gigantic cinema-style TV at his Bel-Air home, I asked him if he ever watched my then CNN show on it, and he observed:  

‘Yes. Have you any concept of just how f***ing massive your head is when it appears on this screen?’

At which point, Dame Joan nodded and said: ‘Sly’s not wrong – you really do have a very big head!’

‘Perhaps you should just call your new show Piers Morgan’s Big Head?’ suggested Yasmin. ‘That works on every level.’

When I sat down to dinner, Princess Beatrice (her new mom) and Edoardo (her husband) made a surprising announcement.

Celia, my wife and I were recently subject to blood tests performed by her staff to determine the condition of our torsos.

Given my wife is a nutrition-obsessed fitness freak, and I’m currently a long Covid-ravaged zombie, I wasn’t expecting a flattering comparison when Gabriela mentioned she’d just got the results back.

But I wasn’t right in every way.

‘I can’t believe I’m saying this, Piers,’ Gabriela sighed, ‘but your results came back better than Celia’s.’

‘Sorry, WHAT?’ spat my stunned spouse.

‘It gets worse,’ said Gabriela. ‘Your results even came back better than MINE.’

‘Sorry, WHAT?’ erupted Beatrice, open-mouthed and eyes bulging in the same way I imagine all the royals do whenever Meghan Markle opens her mouth.

It was a loud laugh.

‘So let me get this straight,’ I said. ‘My body is a more nutritional temple than my far younger wife and my actual nutritionist?’

Edoardo shook his hand and congratulated me at the end of the meal.

Covid-19 is, ironically, what I owe. It turns out, 17 weeks of alcohol abstinence combined with daily 5k runs have made me a statistically verified supreme athlete.

I’d crack open a bottle of Dom Pérignon to celebrate, if only I could taste it.

Sunday, 14 November

I’m filming my last-ever Life Stories show tomorrow with Kate Garraway, so I phoned to check she was feeling OK about it, given the highly distressing situation involving her husband Derek, who remains seriously ill nearly 20 months after getting Covid.

Kate Garraway's (above) husband Derek has been living back home since leaving hospital last April, having become the UK’s longest-surviving Covid inpatient

Kate Garraway’s (above) husband Derek has been living back home since leaving hospital last April, having become the UK’s longest-surviving Covid inpatient

‘Well, I was,’ she chuckled, ‘but as we’ve got nearer to doing this, I’ve realised that for some inexplicable reason I’ve agreed to be grilled by you for three hours in a darkened room, and this can’t possibly end well!’

Derek’s been living back home since leaving hospital last April, having become the UK’s longest-surviving Covid inpatient.

However, he requires nursing care around the clock, sleeps for up to 20 hours each night and rarely communicates with others.

‘How’s he doing?’ I asked.

Suddenly, without warning, Kate said: ‘He’s next to me now. Why don’t you ask him yourself?’

My surprise was overwhelming.

Derek had spoken to me almost two years before at the Christmas Pub Party in December 2019. Kate (above, with Derek in April 2020) had just come out of the I’m A Celebrity… jungle, where she endeared herself to the nation.

That night Derek was bursting with pride about ‘my fabulous wife’ and excited about renewing their wedding vows. I’d never seen them happier. Four months later, the idyllic marital paradise they had imagined collapsed.

Since then I’ve spoken many times with Kate but never Derek.

I just assumed he wouldn’t be capable of any kind of proper conversation, given his condition.

Now I wanted to discover for myself.

‘Darling, it’s Piers,’ I heard Kate say.

‘Derek!’ I cried. ‘It’s so good to talk to you!’

There was a slight pause and then I heard a familiar male voice say very clearly and strongly: ‘Hello!’

Again, I was shocked.

‘HELLO!’ I stammered back. ‘It’s great to hear your voice again. Keep battling, Derek – we’re all so proud of you!’

There was another pause, then I heard him say the words ‘Thank you’ – again, very clearly.

It was an unusual, exciting experience.

There have been many times when I feared I’d never hear Derek speak again.

Kate returned to the line.

‘Wow!’ I said.

‘Yes, wow!’ she replied.

‘I wasn’t expecting that,’ I said.

‘Nor was I!’ Kate exclaimed.

Monday, November 15.

I arrived at Elstree Studios, and immediately went to Kate’s dressing room.

We looked at each other and went ‘WOW!’ again, in unison.

‘That was amazing,’ I said. ‘I can’t believe I actually heard Derek speak and that he understood what I was saying!’

‘We couldn’t believe it either,’ she replied. ‘In fact, when you hung up, one of his carers burst into tears.’

‘Really? Why?’

‘Because since he came home, it’s been so unusual to hear him interact like that.’

Then a horrifying thought entered Kate’s head. ‘Oh God, I hope this doesn’t mean he’s been waiting all this time to hear your magical healing voice… I’m not sure the world is ready for Morgan the Miracle Worker!’

Both of us laughed with joy.

But amid the jocularity, I saw real excitement on Kate’s face.

There is hope.

Kate and her children have nothing but hope. And every time Derek responds to or speaks about the world around him that sparks that hope once more.

The show, which airs on ITV on Sunday, December 5, is the most powerful Life Stories ever because, ultimately, it’s about the power of life.