The skies are grey when we wake up and the temperature has only dipped a little but it’s enough to change our moods, plummeting us into the doldrums after the highs of yesterday.

We also have no safety net of House episodes to fall back on having watched the finale at 1am last night. Never having seen it before, I of course knew there was no way he could die, though I wished for at all the same, having tired of his Peter Pan cum Chucky doll come to life antics as the series wore on… But how I miss you already!

We check our weather apps and plan our day around the impending rain. At least we’ll be spared watering the grass in the evening, which is a welcome break from the chore than fasts losing its appeal.

I wile away an hour writing in the slight chill of the garden before Bear takes over to prepare the BBQ to grill our meat over fire.

We’re having some lamb chops in my standard marinade of harissa, garlic, chilli, as well as some anchovy paste for umami, as well as salt and pepper. Beef is a glorious hunk of côte du boeuf at a ridiculous price that makes us feel like shoplifters. Bear buys the thickest cut so that meat doesn’t dry out and seasons simply with salt, garlic salt and a drizzle of olive oil.

We keep the side dishes simple: a green salad; tomato and sweet onions dressed with salt, olive oil, and basil; grilled onions; and a sweetcorn salsa made with corn, avocados, red onion and cherry tomatoes.

The dressing is lime juice, chilli (scotch bonnet seeds), salt, and a dash of chili powder and cumin. I also add a drop or two of rice wine vinegar (white wine vinegar will do too) and top with coriander.

This series was first published on Medium