I was asked for an interview the other day about what inspires me and at the time I gave some generic blah comment when I should have said MontyDon's Italian Gardens on BBC 2. This programme is a feast of visual pleasure.
In fact I'm nipping out shortly to buy a lemon tree because I love them so much. I've always loved lemons, I would suck them as a child and still do. Mainly I love the shape, colour and the fact they represent the Mediterranean countries. Monty Don has reminded me why I love Italy so much. I always struggle to pick my favourite from France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Morocco or Tunisia. I've never been to Turkey and whilst I love the Dalmatian coast and the beautiful town of Dubrovnik, the afore mentioned 6 get me every time with their food, lemons or bourgainvillea. It is the vivid display of strong colours like yellow and pink, against a backdrop of buildings, blue sky and arid heat. If I close my eyes I can smell it all too. I once stepped off a plane at Athens airport at 4am in the morning and breathed in the smell of hot tarmac!
Luckily for viewers Monty sticks to the point in his programme (unlike me in my posts) and take the viewer through a historical journey of Italian Gardens revealing power, corruption, wealth, love affairs and creativity as well as fitting in an ice cream shop! It is inspiring stuff and makes me want to wear a Stella McCartney citrus print pencil skirt as well as put Italy at number 1 on my list.