Review: Pimms O’Clock

ELLIE CHAN: ‘So this is summer? Remember that mythological, somewhat perplexing state spoken of back in the frozen wastes of Lent term’

Bank hoLIDAY Benet Corpus Clock granchester Marks and Spencer's May Day pimms summer

Dear reader; I write to you ensconced in the lush, scrubby but scrubby in a lush way grass of Grantchester Meadows, serenaded by a guitar and what appears to be a tuba from somewhere further upstream. Moreover, I am excrutiatingly sunburnt.

So this is summer? Remember that mythological, somewhat perplexing state spoken of back in the frozen wastes of Lent term ("What? Grass? Sitting on grass…?"), vaguely recalled as some sort of pre-Lapsarian state of idyll, as you shivered around your tenth mug of face-meltingly black coffee, wondering whether to go and put on a third pair of socks?

Anyway, that was last week.  Lo and behold, what do we now have but sun and heat? If your confusion was anything like mine, you too will have rushed madly to Marks and Spencers and bought at least ten bottles of those preposterously cheap ready-mixed Bellinis, eaten enough of Benet’s champagne sorbets for the Corpus Clock to seem quite amusing, broken out all your vaguely inappropriate beachwear and now be sporting a colour truly reminiscent of a lobster. It is well and truly Pimms O’Clock.

Pimms O’Clock; a state which grips the nation annually around each May Day Bank holiday and causes nothing short of good old fashioned British lunacy. Like everything else it only goes to demonstrate how ludicrously out of sync Cambridge is with the rest of the UK, the world and the laws of nature.

Wait – Exams, I hear you cry? Oh don’t you worry, reader; everyone around me is talking very cheerfully about the exams they have tomorrow as they jovially pass the rose and the Pimms. Tomorrow appears to have become a thing belonging to a parallel dimension. Perhaps the divine is intervening? Surely if we all fail, they can’t chuck anyone out? We’d better just go skinnydipping in the Cam. Yes, I think that’s the best idea.

Well, at least for the more adventurous of us who laugh cheerfully and say something about how hideously freezing it is and how lovely it is.

I am suffocating and gradually becoming more and more stuck to my revision notes, but at least it isn’t the concrete I’d be stuck to back at college. Our sunburn is sunburnt and we are drunk off lukewarm rose less than 24 hours before our exams start. Have we all gone mad? Of course we have. It’s Pimms O’Clock.