Altrincham. I hadn't been there in thirty years, other than a couple of times when the ill-fated Trafford Borough Rugby League club played at the football ground. It is border country, where Manchester's suburbs meets posh Cheshire, not quite one or the other.
Many years ago, I used to live not far from there. I drove past old haunts; the dole office where I used to sign on is now a large wine store; the shopping streets surrounded by new supermarkets seemed a little more down at heel; the pub where the banjo band played every Friday night is, miraculously these days, still open. And all the memories of choices made, of chances taken and missed, of the events that led my young self to be who I am now, accompanied my steps to my holy grail. The market where I would find oil - olive oil - Greek olive oil. It always has to be Greek.
I had found the seller on the internet. I wasn't disappointed. The oil is beautiful stuff imported direct from a small grower in the Pelopponese, sold by an Englishman who has spent a long time in Greece and has fitted in far too well.
I love cooking Greek food, much of the flavour is down to the quality of the ingredients and the oil is essential. So what shall I make ...