Carpets were rolled up and carried out on top of shoulders into the field of white meadow flowers. The scene was framed by rows of lavender and silver olive trees. Next came a few low tables, picnic baskets and some white table clothes. The centerpiece a white jug purchased at the market which was quickly filled with wild cow parsley picked right there and then. The menu was kept extremely simple – grilled sausages with tarragon mustard in crunchy fresh baguette with salads, for some Proustian nostalgia to come no doubt. And to drink chilled Billecart-Salmon rosé from crystal glasses and kept ice cold in a silver ice bucket.
In white floaty lace dresses, straw hats, white jeans and crisp linen shirts we all gathered for an evening of laughter, food and fun. As the sun set, casting a magical orange glow, we were cast in our own oscar worthy movie – part EM Forster part Jean de Fleurette with a sprinkling of Picnic at Hanging Rock (without the disappearances). This was time travel back to that Perfect Summer in 1913 (in the words of Philip Larkin – never such innocence, neither before or since). It was embracing the present – life standing still and living in the moment of gentle breezes across rows of purple lavender. And then we created a meal for all our futures -something so memorable and unique none of us will forget this happy evening. Our holiday was lifted to another level as we created a magical environment that was a life highlight of memories to treasure forever.