A sunny day in London is as rare as a snowstorm in the Sahara. The normally turbid waters of the Thames join in the celebration; the sunlight skives off the surface and decorates the brightly painted hulls of the ferries in millions of ever-shifting patterns.

I take my usual table, slightly away from the Sunday crowds. This pretty little bistro affords a wonderful view of the river and the immortal bridge spanning it. It is owned by a Punjabi gentleman, a friendly fellow who made for wonderful conversation, while he sipped glass after glass of his favourite raw black tea. However, today being a holiday, he is busy tending to the needs of bratty obese children and their overindulgent mothers.