'Sunday, 8 January 1978
'I have decided to keep a diary during Zelman's term of office as Governor-General. I am pleased, because I forget so much and the re-reading of a sentence brings whole occasions, scenes, and otherwise forgotten things, vividly back to mind... '
'And so begins an extraordinary record of the life of a Governor-General's wife. Lady Anna Cowen's edited diaries capture the day-to-day life-the wardrobe fittings, the running of an enormous household-as well as the pomp and circumstance of vice-regal duties during the term Sir Zelman Cowen, the 'healing Governor-General', served after the dismissal by Sir John Kerr of the Whitlam government. ' (Introduction)