Boy, do I enjoy Guido’s sausage.
God this blog is getting utterly predictable. And, talking of utter predictability – The British Weather. It’s a sad but indisputable fact that in my warped mind there’s a delicious connection between Summer time and sausages.
I’ve always been in love with our Summer. It’s quirky and it’s unfathomable. It’s an enigma. It has a life all of its own. The sun can turn up unexpectedly and scorch slap bang in the middle of February then, for the whole of August, I’ll be wearing a plastic poncho.
Well this year it swept in right on cue a few weeks ago only to blow straight back out again.
“It’s here again,” said Guido staring up at the sky last night. “Up there, behind those whispy clouds is the sun, and it’s shining bright,” he said, pointing upwards with his index finger.
I took off my glasses and looked up hopefully. I half expected a big old drip from our leaky gutter to drop straight into my eye. I blinked. He was right. There it was. I could immediately imagine sipping white rum, orange curaçao and a twist of lime.
There’s another big phenomenon when the sun eventually decides to shine in Bermondsey. In the first flush of a warm June I can guarantee the same thing always happens.
“You know what?” Guido stood on the steps to our loft. “I’ve got that balmy June feeling,” and he said it like he meant it in a way that might involve sausages.
This was good.
“I’d say conditions are pretty terrific tonight.”
There was a pause.
“I’m going to get it out.”
This was better than good.
I accept that on a cold night when Guido says the words – I’m going to get it out – it usually involves at least one of us having to take all of our clothes off. But what he meant last night was he’s got a rickety old handmedown hibachi grill his father used to burn on the beach in Malaga. It’s seasoned by time and decades of spatchcock chicken and burnt old bamboo kebab sticks. It’s the foolproof and well oiled secret ingredient to Guido’s perfect barbecue.
I telephoned our friends Ted and Gary.
“Brace yourselves,” I said, “Guido’s getting it out.” I could almost hear them salivating down the line.
Ten minutes later they showed up at our place with Brian their super intelligent Jack Russell. All three of them were panting with their tongues hanging out.
“Where’s his big sausage?” asked Ted hopefully.
Guido lit the hibatchi.
Then there was a tap tap on the back gate. It was Bethany and Ethel, our hungry neighbours from the laundrette next door.
“I could tell by the smell of smouldering wood chips Guido had got it out,” Ethel said. “I’ve brought you a bottle of my homemade hooch.” She had the mesmerised look of someone with a blackened pork chop praying on her mind.
I should have known Guido isn’t really like other guys who grill. Until last night I’d never had smoked oysters with roasted garlic butter and romano, toasted vegetable quesadillas with kale pesto, then baked barbecued bananas and vanilla ice cream.
I’m really loving the start of Summer.
I just hopes it sticks around long enough for Guido to get his sausage out.