Lazing on a Sunday afternoon

Sunday. Is it the last day of the week? Or is it the first? It depends on your calendar, but for most of us it’s a day with a particular curse – it’s the one immediately before Monday. And that’s a terrible thing for any day to live up to.

Sundays have an air about them that’s unique. It’s not a brash, excitable puppy like Saturday: it’s a much more relaxed, pub cat of a day. Lazy and unrushed, it’s all about maximising the relaxation. Lie-ins under the duvet (well, if you’re not a parent anyway), chilled-out brunches, soporific pub lunches around an open fire – they’re all hallmarks of that peculiar Sunday feeling.

But what the British tend to do best is the home-cooked Sunday roast. A celebration of all that is meaty and carbtastic in the culinary canon of these isles. A meal that’s as much about the hours of preparation as it is the actual consumption of the end result. There are potatoes to peel and chop, roasting joints to season and baste and innumerable vegetables and accoutrements to prepare. It’s not a meal for the fainthearted cook, but it’s worth the hard toil.

There’s something immensely comforting about the smell created by a Sunday roast in the oven. It wafts through the house, filling the rooms with a scent that promises crispy roast potatoes, succulent cuts of meat and a heart-attack enducing amount of stuffing. So, I salute the great British roast – long may it continue to fill our Sunday bellies.

But, as I said at the start, however great your Sunday is you can’t escape the truth that Monday is creeping closer and closer. And for those of you who live in the UK, that moment of horror crystalises at one precise moment. Just after 6pm the familiar strains of the intro music announce the arrival of every farmer’s essential viewing: Countryfile. The BBC’s magazine on country living, farming and the countryside has an affectionate place in many hearts. But it does pretty much signal the death of the weekend. When you hear Matt Baker announce that next in-depth section on protecting the habitat of the native red squirrel, you know that the fun times are over and Monday morning is just a few scant hours away. Damn, you Baker!

So, drown your sorrows in those indulgent roast potatoes, and try to put the start of the working week out of your mind. Just think, in five-day’s time it will be the weekend all over again!

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