The sunlight isn't golden in the mornings, it's silver. And so it coats the world beneath it: the sea, the clouds, all and sundry sparkling in the morning light. The water becomes quicksilver and the landscape slips behind a polarised filter.
It doesn't last long, or it hasn't of late at least. The wind picks up. I watch the waves ripple on their swells and see the walkers pull their collars up against the surprising chill. The cloud rolls in and the silver turns quietly to grey.
Summer's almost a month away and it still isn't warm enough for Spring, though people seem to be ploughing on regardless. Pimms is swilled and I see shorts and flip-flops with alarming regularity. Sunglasses are fused to every face and there are fewer pairs of tights beneath the skirts that walk by. The tables outside the pubs are full of smokers and drinkers laughing and shivering. There's often the whiff of BBQs or bonfires or both travelling along with the breeze.
I'm ready. I've got a closet full of shorts, two pairs of flip-flops. There's a nice selection of whites on the wine rack at home and some cider in the fridge. But most of my drinking of late has been in the warmth of the pub. I bumped into a chef I used to work with and an impromptu 'quick pint' turned into several. The banter flowed as did the beer and we lost track of whose round it was. We finished off the proceedings with a couple of quick shots and stumbled our separate ways. I heard later he got into trouble with his girlfriend for showing up late and tipsy. As an act of solidarity I gave myself a stern telling off for my behaviour. It was worth it. As I get older catching up reminds me more of where I am, rather than where I've been.