I love Pimms. It's all right, it's a purely legal and not at all indecent form of love (not, in other words, the same emotion I feel when confronted with, say, Tony Robinson). There's something so essentially Summery about drinking strong liquor laced only with lemonade. I know, traditionally, one drinks it with cucumber and strawberries but we didn't have any in the fridge, so I thought I'd experiment with some alternative additives...Anyone else for a haddock, cheese and Pimms cocktail? . Apparently you're also supposed to have mint in it, but, let's face it, if my fridge doesn't have cucumber then it's not going to have mint, is it? Mint sauce is nearly as good though. For reference.
I always know that summer has truly arrived when the local Co-Op starts stocking Pimms, just as I know that the new school year has started by the way they fill the shelves with Christmas puddings, and that Christmas is truly on the way when the Easter Eggs hit the stockroom.
You'll have to imagine the haddock. I can't find a picture of a Pimms-and-haddock cocktail.
So, here I sit, in my garden surrounded by hopeful cats, sipping at my fish-and-fruit cup and gazing around me at those tell-tale signs that summer has arrived - the annual underwear-wash hanging (somewhat stiffly) from the line, the phallic rhubarb sprouts protruding through the soil like underground flashers, and the annual Lawnmower wars breaking out elsewhere in the village. And, since we are not going on summer holidays this year but are, instead, going to crouch behind the sofa for a fortnight, we need all the sunshine we can get. Last year was so unsunny that I actually caught several sheep-diseases and the vet was up all night with me.
So I shall release you, my dears, into the sunshine where you may skip and play like unto young gazelle. But don't knock over the Pimms, I'm not made of Stilton...