As the flat haze of the heatwave slumped into a cooler day of clouds, the evening brought the most vibrant sunset we've seen for a while. All the most delicious colours of Provence combine in a display like this: shades of apricot, peach, tomato and aubergine.
These are the hot colours that sizzle in warm air and lighten the heart. This is high summer, and indulgence and good company. At least that's what they are to me. As the last guests have departed and our own leisurely packing up begins, even these clothes on the washing line are cheering, each one an exuberant reminder of having fun while wearing them.
The same pinks and reds and oranges can be found in the garden flowers, especially the pelargoniums and the Marvel of Peru:
Darker elements of the sunset are held in the skin of the sumptuous white-fleshed nectarines we keep in the fridge to intensify the pleasure of biting into their juicy sweetness:
And, of course, no Provencal eveing would be complete without a glass of cold rosé, which comes in all shades from dark plum to the palest clementine. We prefer the lighter wines, made from the cinsault grape which produce a glowing orange colour in the glass and taste like iced fruit. As we sip watching the sun cast red shadows up the hillside and then light the sky, there's absolutely no need for rose-coloured spectacles.