Strawberry fields forever


Feeling the gentle rays of the evening sun, you wonder how on earth everything could have been so black in your heart a few days earlier. Just a passing attack of the blues and nothing to worry about! My mind is filled with thoughts of long summer days in England, sitting by the river while a gentle breeze creates delicate ripples on the surface of the water. But I also think of picnics with friends in the park with quiches, salads, raspberry pavlova, cookies, fruit and homemade lemonade spread out over a checked blanket, happily forgetting the time until the sun disappears and we reluctantly pack everything away, giving each other large portions of leftovers so none of us will have to cook the next day.

Or perhaps to stop for an ice cream from a Gelatoria, eaten in the shade, watching the others around me lying in the sun. I imagine taking a train to a place I've never been before, too distracted by the unknown landscape to read the books I've so carefuly chosen, tucking into the sandwiches and cake prepared at the crack of dawn. Most of all, I'd love to see the sea again soon, to hear the cries of the seagulls overhead, mesmerised by the breaking of the waves. There's a longing for light cotton dresses, boat trips at dusk, for days in Venice where I'd awaken to the church bells ringing out in conversation with one another in Antonioni's l'Avventura. I feel nostalgic for tennis matches on grass even if the sight of red clay courts is more poignant because it reminds me how beautiful and tragic the Garden of the Finzi-Continis was.

Yet for the moment, I'm trying to enjoy the days while they're still not too hot, to take advantage of the endless evenings walking in the parks or scanning the shelves of my favourite bookstores, torn between ones on photography, novels in French or an illustrated guide to botany, to buy as much fresh and juicy fruit as my fridge can accommodate from the market and to bake as much as possible.

Rainy days seem far away

Beautiful flowers close to Sophie-Charlotte Platz

Doesn't the green of the leaves look amazing in this light?

Relaxing on Friday evening in Schlosspark Charlottenburg

Nice accessories in Bleibtreustraße

Evening falls on Savignyplatz

For tennis, the most appropriate thing would be strawberries and cream but for the moment, I felt like making another tart, filled with crème patisserie. The ones I chose were more expensive than those on other market stalls but biting into them, I had forgotten how amazing strawberries could be. I've often complained they're overrated - expensive and often simply sour or tasted. While they might not take the special place of lemons, I have the feeling I'll be buying them quite a lot this summer. The recipe comes from Smitten Kitchen - click here.

Strawberry tart (tarte aux fraises)

Monica Vitti in l'Avventura


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