last week, the day before an exhibition, my husband swings by my studio at 2pm as arranged to collect me in our little blue car, Silly.
Now Silly is highly impractical for carrying paintings, especially when wet, she's small, but she does the job.
I am promised a picnic by my husband, whilst I paint the dying poppies in a wheat field he's cycled past, tumbling down the embankment of a roundabout on the fast road to Cirencester.
So, on a bright hot summer afternoon, we park on a lay-by, carry a 24inch x 24inch canvas, easel, paints and one chair for Tony, over the waterlogged stile & make camp in the field. The wheat is watery green coloured as far as I can see to the skyline.
& those poppies bob at the near horizon like proud buttons.
I've bought a tube of "poppy red" paint recently, so it will be interesting to see if the colour lives up to its name. I'll mix up a colour match if not.
So I set my stand, as Tony shakes out his Scottish Heritage folding travel chair to begin to read his latest hardback purchase, 3 for 2 at Waterstones according to the label.
I've just mixed my yellow sky colour when I hear the rustling of a paper bag.
& Tony produces our picnic - bright yellow-green sweet grapes, seedless, still dripping from the wash they've had an hour earlier.
coupled with cooled bottles of vimto and diet coke.
So I work fast over the canvas, pill popping delicious grapes as I paint.
& in 3/4 hour, the oil painting is finished - Tony hasn't managed his first chapter as I fold down my travel easel, and wonder what's been at my feet.
I look down to see I've been standing in nettles, well trampled by now.
Back over the stile, wobbling somewhat with wet paint to think about, and tie the canvas to the back of the little blue car, homewards.
I hope there's not a sudden gust of wind.
An idyllic moment of painting, and I'm rather loath to put this one up for sale ............ but I have and it is gone now to another home.