Wednesday, 25 July 2012


We Brits are reknowned for our patience and we've had to use this skill to the utmost in our long wait for summer to properly kick in this Olympic year. 

We moaned of course. But now we can do what we like best and moan about the heat. 

Suddenly, all along the high street, legs have appeared. Male legs I mean. Lots of other body parts are also on show and probably shouldn't be. 

I am particularly pleased to be able to eat salads again. Those wonderful, guilt-free meals with mounds of healthy lettuce and other greens all drowned in lashings of gut-swelling salad cream. 

These are indeed the 'Salad days' which I'm sure you recognise as a familiar phrase. Though sometimes used to mean 'in the days of our maturity' it actually means the opposite.

'Salad days' refers to the days of our youth when we were as green as salad. 

Queen Elizabeth, during her Silver Jubilee Loyal Address, referred to her vow to God and her people in her ascension to the throne when she was 25: "Although that vow was made in my salad days, when I was green in judgement, I do not regret nor retract one word of it." 

She was actually quoting Shakespeare who had written in Anthony and Cleopatra (1606): CLEOPATRA: "My salad days ...
When I was green in judgment - cold in blood"
I think I prefer the more modern treatment of the salad days of our maturity. Long may they continue.

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