I don’t mean to point out the bleeding obvious, but summer is most definitely here.

It’s not just the fact that every time I step out onto the terrace at the Casita I feel like I’m standing in a giant hair-dryer – and it’s been a while since one of those was anywhere near my bald bonce, I can assure you. Or the fact that 50 Shades has so little energy that she has been lying flat out on the table and looks like she’s been ironed.

And last but not least, you know that summer has arrived due to specific smells. Most distinctively when you throw the rubbish in the back of the 4×4 and then forget to drop it off in the bins, letting it to stew in the heat all day. The only smell worse than that was when I discovered a Tupperware container containing a tuna and sweetcorn sandwich that had been under the driver’s seat for three months. And I stupidly decided to open it. As I lay on the floor convulsing, I realised that I might have just invented the world’s first tuna tazer…

Obviously, high summer means the annual arrival of the madding and maddening crowds. Along with the sheer amount of people in town, traffic chaos and usual summer gripes, the other factor that makes summer such a challenge is the fact that everything shuts. I don’t mean the beach bars and restaurants, but the everyday shops and services that you need if you live here full time. It’s easier to get a cerveza than have a carburettor changed in summer, trust me, as Spain takes August off and heads to the beach.

When you have the sort of luck with cars that I have, that makes this month more than a little nervy. I always drive defensively during summer, as the road manners of other drivers can be a little, ahem, ‘challenging’, but I’ve even caught myself giving cyclists – and you all know my thoughts about the legions of MAMILs (Middle Aged Men In Lycra) – a cheery wave as I amble along the Istan road.

The sun must be getting to me. I’d go out and buy a bigger hat. But the shop is probably shut for summer…