It was hot; balmy hot, the occasional breeze only shifting the hot from there to here.
‘We’re under a tree,’ I tell Christopher unhelpfully. There must be a few thousand trees in Hyde Park. ‘Can you see the guys playing football?’
‘I think so. Which path do I follow?’
He makes a frustrated noise.
‘It’s your fault for being late,’ I say with no edge to my voice, but his reply is clipped.
‘Don’t blame me, I had to go to the supermarket!’ he says as if he were taking his Mother to church and not buying cucumber infused vodka.
Five minutes later I see him walking in the wrong direction. He looks lost and mad so I can’t help but bait him some more.I can c u
I watch as his phone beeps and he checks his message.I’m going to kill you
, he texts back instantly.
I wave the soft red bat I’ve brought for “games” at him and eventually he sees me and I guide him towards our tree. Katy is already laid out supine on a blanket, her legs crossed at the ankle, wrist shielding her eyes. Alba arrives wearing jeans and a grey t-shirt.
‘I didn’t bring clothes for this weather,’ he admits, ‘it isn’t supposed to be this hot in England.’ It’s a brash statement for someone who arrived in the country less than three months ago but we look around at the heat and the grass and the shirtless Australians playing footy, their beer bellies already blush pink, and we nod silently in agreement.
‘Have a scone,’ I offer, holding the Tupperware container containing eight perfectly formed lumps of carb, hexagonals punctuated with raisins.
‘Did you make these?’ asks Katy, taking one.
‘Of course I did - and I churned the butter too,’ I reply.
And no one can decide if I’m telling the truth or not, but no one really minds because it’s sunny in Hyde Park and we don’t have to vote, or work, or fight, or fill in tax forms, or adjust a tie, or compromise. We have the whole day to ourselves.