The scenery on the drive down to Cambridge is punctuated with bright golden fields. They seem to be radiating their own sunlight.
“It’s Rapeseed” explains Charlie, “Terrible for hay fever.”
“What do they grow it for?” I ask.
Although I still have questions I let myself return to a gentle mathematics. It’s a half meditative state; I draw shapes along the countryside - triangles, hexagons, arcs, shapes with no names; points from wooden stumps to distant pylons and back again, clicking my teeth together at every brake in a hedge, tapping my foot to the rhythm of the road.
Once we arrive at Lucy’s house, a handsome Anglo-country cottage with an Aga and coffee brown beams, she mixes us all a drink and we sit outside eating brownies and sipping white wine or gin until it’s time to get ready to go out.
While Charlie and Lucy are showering, Trinity and I jump on one of the bicycles (all the other’s had flat tyres). I peddle and Trin perches precariously on the back. On the way to the village shop we cycle past a church with this sign;
For God’s Sake, Jesus loves you.
The roads get so narrow that cars wait either end to let us through. I can feel Trin’s fingers dig into my waist. When we wobble, she squeezes.
The next day, Kate and Tom arrive at lunchtime. When I make my appearance, squinting and knocking back three glasses of water, Lucy has almost finished all the food for the barbeque – a spiral pasta dish with poppy seeds, doughy white rolls dusted with flour, potatoes, salads with spicy cherry tomatoes and meat or faux-meat for the barbie. Tom makes Mojito’s using lemons, white rum and mint from the garden and the jug sits in the middle of the table with a large wooden spoon.
We eat quickly to begin with, and then we pick and nibble more lazily over the next few hours. Kate lays on a blanket and complains that her breasts are swollen as she’s about to have her period. Charlie offers to milk her but the suns too hot so instead we flop about on the grass, on garden chairs and a big green hammock, listening to the wood pigeons call to each other until it’s time for us all to go home.