You must be wondering how long can she go on for. If you know me you wouldn’t even entertain that thought, I would just see it as a challenge. Anyway as it is out of my control I continue to do and watch with amusement and at other times with incredulity the world around me. I am on furlough till end July so need to engage the grey cells by doing something a bit more , have yet to decide what that could be.But no worries on the exercise front as the watch still hounds me when needed.
The garden story continues to write itself thanks to this glorious weather.
The bloody non existent cauliflowers that bolted decided amongst themselves, the few that I hadn’t pulled out that is, to tease me. They had nominated one to produce a “floret”. That could really provide Cauliflower three ways for a doll perhaps!
The courgettes are like triffids; I feel like telling them to calm down and stop hogging my small veg area. The sugar snaps are starting to get comfortable and I reckon will be climbing up those poles any day.The beetroots (grown from seed) have been planted out; here we go again. I will watch with baited breath and report on their progress.
There was a time when I used to grow a lot of beetroots and once I nearly called the surgery for an appointment because I ate so many that my wee turned red! Too much information but I consider that a public health information service. The tomatoes are popping up everywhere. Did I tell you that I actually hate fresh tomatoes (weird texture and taste), along with celery; devil’s foods, both of them. I’m sure student and hubby will be snuffling them down unless I use them in a curry or pasta sauce first. It must be my age but I am now starting to share cuttings with friends.
I thought it was only my mother in law who did that sort of thing. The rose that I’ve coveted is here , blooming and fragrant.If you are interested it is thornless too, clever rose, Zephyr Druid.
My longing for a larger garden continues and I gaze at my plot and wonder what else I can squeeze in without upsetting the student and the hubby.
Because the weather has been so good it has meant less time in the kitchen. There is a definite correlation. Since last week I’ve baked and cooked a few things. On Monday I made what I can only call something between a pie, a quiche and a tart? A peiche perhaps. The contents were spinach, feta, ricotta, pine nuts and sultanas. Those observant ones will say that is a spanakopita, ok so you got me! But there was no filo pastry so is it really?
Then on Tuesday I rustled up a quick pasta bake, which was one of the best ever. Left over asparagus which was limp as anything, sliced courgettes, diced aubergine, red onion and plenty of mozzarella and parmesan with good old tube pasta.
When the weather was bad on Wednesday I decide to cook a feast for a friend’s birthday bash. For starters I made Banana and Fenugreek bhajiyas (pakoras) with a coriander/chillies/mango/tomato/apple chutney. I know what you’re thinking, what’s fenugreek and what are you doing putting bananas in a pakoras, surely it’s for banana bread! For mains it was okra, cauliflower & peas and lentils. I really enjoyed making all the food and it was well received, thankfully.
I baked a carrot and walnut cake which was yummy, and I did put more sugar in the cream cheese this time (I take on feedback, it’s a gift I’ve been told). And some of you may be wondering if I baked that cake for the ex, well I couldn’t say no to the student. I did the Lisa Faulkner Fantasy cake, which is essentially a Strawberry and Almond creation.
Then on Sunday I recreated mummy’s mooli (radish) parathas. Perfect Sunday treat, comfort food at its best and served with yoghurt and pickle and washes down with mug of tea.
The bike came back from the bike hospital in quick time. I couldn’t wait to join the MAWIL (middle aged women in lycra)gang again. Actually it’s more MAWICC (middle aged women in comfortable clothing). One of the group now has Strava. I know right. We just need to learn how to use it and actually read the route as we are cycling. So I wore my new bike gloves on my last long bike ride and I can certainly confirm that they are a great addition.
Below I just wanted to compare the differences between my bike rides with hubby (few as he keeps leaving me for his biking buddy) and the one with the ladies. Work out which is which?
Speed of ride : ok or bloody fast
Length of ride : 20km or how far do you want to go?
Problem : forget it or good chance of resolution
Photo taking: mandatory or only if you push it
Stops: Several or None – unless you’re crossing a road !
Food: Carrots & houmous/cake/dates/popcorn/sandwiches/hobnobs or Energy bar
Conversation: Flowing or Minimal
Feedback on your cycling: None or Plenty (apparently I am better and faster – my speed was like a walker before 🤨)
I’m not going to say which one is more fun at this stage, perhaps you can work it out. I need to keep hubby on side as I am working upto him giving us a tutorial on cycle maintenance. I haven’t actually agreed this yet but with my negotiation skills I’m sure it will be soon; perhaps I can ask the student to intervene.
I have realised that a lot of people around me are dog owners. I am not quite sure how it happened but it just has. I am now going on doggy/pooch walks with a certain Raffa and Betsy.
I have nothing against dog owners, some of them are my good friends and family. But I know that they are a sensitive lot. A walk in the park is never easy. The ‘stay alert’ mantra comes in handy. You never know when your “baby” (the dog) will encounter some rude and unfriendly dog or even owner. It’s best to keep them on the lead. I love the small dogs with attitude, coming up close to the big boys and almost saying, “come on then”. A friend said recently, “I think I would really like a dog but I don’t think I could cope with the “pooh” pick ups”. The dog owners jump straight in, “well you did it for the babies”. Yes, but we stopped after a while! And god forbid if you’ve got a big dog, the maxi size bags needed for sure. Also you just get used to it.
However, I love going for dog walks. They are more a series of mini walks with lots of stops; calling for the dog, admonishing the dog for trying to eat something; stopping the dog from getting into any altercation with another dog and then making sure they are ok when another dog doesn’t want to play. It’s a mine field, they are just like children and can make or break your day or your bank balance. Like anything they come with a host of opportunities to accessorize, my favourite of the moment is Betsy’s bassinet. I defy you not to make cooing sounds when you see it.
We actually have a talented neighbour who creates images of your pet.It is a winner, no pet owner is going to say no to these wonderful images.
So, if I ever ever talk about owning a dog, you will know that aliens have taken over. I can barely look after myself ! Don’t hate me you dog lovers and I know some of you know that dogs are better than humans.
On the summer solstice a small group of us met to practice yoga outdoors under the sun on grass by the River Ouse. Yes we gave the passerbys some entertainment but as I had my eyes shut for quite a lot of the time I am not sure what they made of it all. I’m sure that’s nothing compared to what else is on offer in Bedford town.
So a few weeks ago we came to an asana called The Plough, where you essentially flip your legs over your head as you lie down on your back. Sort of thing kids are always doing, god bless them. I don’t think explained that well.
This image will show it better. I would like to announce that I completed it on Sunday, thanks to our teacher.
The social diary is getting busy now that everyone seems to be opening up their gardens for small groups. I may have to go back to using a diary. We even played bingo on zoom recently; feel free to try. The tension was there and it was actually good fun. Not quite Bongo Bingo.
I leave you with my most important purchase this week . to ensure my credentials as Mrs Mop don’t wane. Yes a new mop. I bought it at the local Sainsburys and I was suckered in by one of the brands! All these years around marketers and still haven’t learnt. Hubby can now really call me Mrs Mop. I may even use it this coming week.
NB: I wonder when we will go to 1m. A new dance in town, the one meter shuffle. Kerching for all those sign makers. Out with the 2 and in with the 1. So much for being green !!
NNB: Marcus Rashford (note correct name) we salute you ! Next time I need anything doing I am going message you and not my MP. So impressed !
NNNB: I was telling someone (you know who you are) that the hubby and I have been watching Celebrity Gogglebox. She said , “so you are watching famous people watching their televisions.” There was a silence…. and then they came. “ Oh, the student introduced us to it a while back. It’s really good downtime tele on a Friday night. I like looking at the houses of the rich and semi famous.” Think I did enough to recover my credibility.
NNNNB: So am keeping an eye on the business news and the following two cliches caught me eye ;
“Pent up demand”: cos we just can’t wait to shop. Some of us have been doing it already don’t you know!! No penting upping going on here. “Kicking the can down the road “: this can be applied to anything at all. All it requires is deciding on indecision I’m sure.
NNNNNB: I did a good deed this week. I was very proud of myself. It was difficult but I worked at it and shared my mango box with a friend! Those who love mangoes will understand what a sacrifice that was, especially towards the end of the season.