Frequently our British summers are capricious and it is as likely or not I'll pack a jumper or two to take with me to a cricket match. Not the other week - Sunday last was a bursting-out-all-over-heat-filled blue & green scorcher, almost perfection and at one of the nicest grounds I have had the pleasure to visit, Sandford St Martin.
Mr Lavender came too. He enjoys a bit of cricket, so long as the sun is out and there is a nice tea.
Despite the gorgeous surroundings, Mr Lavender, Andy's mother and myself decided to do a little exploring; too tempting a road to resist and there was a glorious poppy field on the dege of the ground.
The village itself is not directly in our patch - Sandford St Martin is a plush little place on the other side of Chipping Norton.
Prosperous looking even by Cotswold standards. We are in serious commuter belt here, handy for the cities of Oxford and London, making house prices *interesting* despite the quaint rural appearance.
Mr Lavender had a thigh high view from my combats pocket.
At last though the sun got too hot for me; Andy's mum is a lizard and can soak it up all day - I am made of frailer stuff. We were back just in time for tea and Andy smuggled a plate out for us. It was the best tea I've had in many a year, if not THE best. All home made and the softest, moistest, plumpest Victoria sponge imaginable, like a mother's welcoming lap, just begging to be dived into.
Somewhat over-full, we read the latest Jeanne D'Arc Living (which matched Mr Lavender's colours) and watched what turned into a very tight and exciting match.
But despite the best efforts of young Sam, Andy's top weapon, things did not go in our favour. Poor Sam was 99 not out and missed his century.
We lost, but it was a good, sporting match - jolly nice team and all that. And a tea to die for. Hopefully a fixture to be repeated.