05/26/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Talking To Ali Hewson, AKA Mrs. Bono

There was a time when one might have expected a meeting with a rock star's wife to be attended by a certain amount of mayhem - temper tantrums and trashed hotel rooms, perhaps, or at the very least a retinue including a drug dealer, masseuse, hair stylist and personal astrologer.

But the softly spoken 47-year-old woman sitting opposite me in a suite in Claridge's is anything but the cartoon version of a hell-raising, hard-drinking rock chick; she is wearing a black calf-length Comme des Garçons skirt with a Victorian bell-sleeved blouse; raven hair neatly brushed, porcelain skin unadorned by make-up.

She is, in fact, very much her own woman - Ali Hewson rather than Mrs Bono - and as such it is not wifely duties that have brought her to London today, but a meeting with her business associates in Nude, a thoroughly modern, impeccably ethical skincare brand. And, as befits her role as a long-term environmental campaigner, she has travelled here from her home in Dublin not by private jet but by scheduled airline, and she won't be partying in the suite tonight, but returning in time to see her four children before they go to bed this evening.

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