This year -- for the first time in many -- we're having a proper summer. By 'proper summer', I mean that it's not raining every day of the week, the temperature's above 15 C, and you don't need to head out swathed in scarves to brave the elements. (I'm not joking. One year, I didn't even unpack my summer clothes.)
So to celebrate, this week's Ten for Tuesday will be all about my favourite summer things!
1. Pimms. When I posted about Pimms a week ago, many of you didn't seem to know what it is! For shame! Pimms is a yummy liqueur that you mix with lemonade, cucumbers, strawberries and gin. I know it sounds strange but it can actually be very refreshing. And lethal. A friend of mine once streaked through Richmond after consuming too much Pimms.
2. Proms. Every night from mid-July to mid-September, you can attend wonderful classical music concerts at the Royal Albert Hall for only £4!
3. The Serpentine Pavilion. Each summer, a new architect is commissioned to design a pavilion in Kensington Gardens. It's up for about two months and then they dismantle it.
4. Stripy deck chairs in Hyde Park. Plop one down by the lake, lean back, and watch the trees sway above your head. Bliss!
5. Regent's Park Open-Air Theatre. The only permanent professional outdoor theatre in Britain, Regent’s Park Open-Air Theatre holds over a thousand people. With its pitched seats, though, you’ll feel like you can practically touch the actors on stage. Founded in 1932, the resident company is the New Shakespeare Company. At least two Shakespeare plays are performed each summer – one of them usually A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which lends itself perfectly to the park’s leafy environment.
6. Swimming in the ponds at Hampstead Heath. Bizarre but true - if you fancy a dip in a secluded pond, head up north to the Heath. There's a men's pond, a women's pond and a mixed pond.
7. Opera Holland Park. Every summer, a massive open-air opera stage is constructed in Holland Park. Tickets range from £10 to £57 and if you're a young person (not me...) then you can get free tickets here.
8. Pavement Cafés. Being able to sit on the street and eat probably doesn't seem that exciting, but when you live in a country where the sun rarely makes an appearance then it's downright intoxicating (in more ways than one).
9. South Bank Stroll. I may have mentioned that my husband proposed and we got married on the South Bank, so it's no surprise strolling along the Thames when the sky is brilliantly blue is on my top 10 list.
10. Sun. SUN! SUUNNNN! Although technically, I'm not sure sun can really be classified as part of a British summer, when it does make an appearance we appreciate it that much more!