Monday, 5 May 2008

how you know when it's the start of summer

This has been a rather cold and rainy spring by Roman standards. April has been more an English April than an Italian one (and they say that summer will be cooler than usual, too).

In my family the arrival of the month of May is greeted with a little ditty which runs:

First of May, First of May
Outdoor fucking starts today
But as usual it do rain
So we fucks off indoors again.

I am not sure whether to attribute this rhyme to my mother or to Jilly Cooper, with whom it is for some reason associated in my mind. Nor can I say whether the mental conflation of one's mother with Jilly Cooper is a good thing or rather a disturbing one. Anyway.

Clearly this is an English view of 1 May. Here in fact it was a lovely day. It is a bank holiday in Italy and so like a huge number of Italians I took the ponte - the bridge: taking an extra day off to make a long weekend. I went with my friend to her house on the Lago del Turano, which has come on a good deal since first inaugurated last year, in terms of furnishing and decoration. This weekend was the turn of the garden, at last. I don't know very much about gardening, but I know more than she or her partner do, so I get to make solemn pronouncements and get taken almost seriously. Ish.

So on Friday we went to the garden centre to buy honeysuckle, an assortment of herbs, and some low-maintenance ground cover plants. And it was extremely hot, and I actually caught the sun a bit (I have very pale skin, oh ok then, pasty if you must, and I burn at the drop of a hat). And I am now putting away all my winter clothes and getting my summer things out. Woo! The Great Wardrobe Changeover is an important moment in the passing of the seasons. This means that Winter is Over.

Of course, it has started to rain this evening, with quiet determination. Maybe England isn't that far away after all.

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