And the friendship does bloom. My parents are invited to the smart pad in London. My mother ponders a gift for a woman who has everything and decides on a jar of Lidl's pickled herrings. So irresistibly do they evoke their Baltic cruise that she buys another jar for herself and swallows a few spoonfuls for a night cap.
Next day they rev up the Skoda for the trip into town and my mother forgets the herrings. They speed back and she lunges into the fridge and grabs the jar and she hands it to the hostess who is thrilled and grateful.
Back at home again, my mother is probing the fridge and finds the second jar of fish. Unopened. The truth dawns. She has beguiled her grand friends with a half-eaten jar of herrings with the Lidl price tag still on.
I sadly relinquish visions of yacht bobbing and am looking into caravans with plumbing.
What should you give a woman has everything? I'll reward the most successful suggestion with a postcard from my first yacht holiday!