Saturday, 24 July 2010
A is for Al Fresco
So today was D-day, the first date in our alphabetical adventure of London. I was told not to dress too nicely and to bring a bikini. Alarm bells immediately started to ring and I promptly warned Antonio that if he thought taking me to one of those Turkish spas/ brothels was a good idea then he was most definitely mistaken.
My worries subsided when he produced a ready-made picnic of mini Scotch eggs, hummus, crisps and cucumber and my favourite fizzy pink wine. We were off to a good start, so we took the tube, departing at a very sunny and vibrant Hampstead Heath. Pleased at the location, I was simply expecting a few bubbles and snacks in the park, but I was alarmed to learn that we were going to take part in some Al Fresco swimming at the communal outdoor ponds.
The area was packed with bikini-clad women and brave men who jumped straight into the murky water. Without a moment to sit down and take in the challenge, I was ordered to undress and get straight in. ‘You are not expecting me to jump in that dirty water are you?’ I said. ‘Stop moaning,’ Antonio said, ‘come on’.
So I stood on the side for about 5 minutes, dipping my toe in the water and scowling at Antonio who was already swimming around shivering whilst trying to convince me that it was really warm. Eventually I took the plunge but it was bloody freezing so I lasted about 30 seconds..30 seconds too long in my eyes but it certainly sorted out the beginnings of a cold I had coming.
After our rather brief dip in the pool we set off to enjoy our picnic in the sunshine, stuffing our faces with cous cous, chip-sticks and chocolate sundaes, whilst enjoying a blissful afternoon of relaxing in the long grassy meadow.
So, as far as the first date goes the Italian has set a pretty high standard of originality – now all I have to do is think of something to do with B....