Mary Trump has been e-mailing a mutual friend to ask about the right decorum for our Lunch. “I’m not sure what kind of food to have — finger sandwiches, scones with clotted cream, kippers?” she wrote. “It’s very stressful.” 

When we meet I try to reassure the US president’s niece that she should stop being self-conscious: as a Brit, that’s my prerogative. Yet here she is frantically shifting baskets of clothes out of my field of vision. She has had to retreat to her bedroom because PBS has sent her two cameras to facilitate interviews from her living room. “I’m really sorry about the mess,” she says. 

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