Wednesday 11th November, cool and rainy.
The blog is back, with salvaged entries back to July. No redirects yet so this is a rather secret blog. Never mind, it's nice to have my little soapbox window open again. Lest we forget? Well, I do not wear a poppy, I did respect the 2 mins silence, in the pub on Sunday, before the Chelsea: MU match (ah well, win some lose some); as did all the assembled. I do not take kindly to being advised that I "ought to" support the war in Afghanistan, though I suppose it makes sense to those who understand, and revere the UK fallen for dying in defence of our planet destroying addictions. No Blood For Oil still seems a good plan to me. You haven't heard this story? Go on, try typing Afghanistan pipeline into a well-known search engine yourself, and pick a hit or few. You'll find allies I'd rather not have, but that's always the way. Any cause has its parasites. Click through the poppy for my source for the image.
Coincidentally, in the last entry before service was interupted, we were walking through Patching Woods, looking for chestnuts far too soon, and finding blackberries. Saturday 7th, for the first time since, we escaped for a walk in the country again. Herstmonceux this time, where the castle is, and the Science Centre with its observatory domes still rising like pallid eaudenil giant funghi above the treetops. The castle is a conference centre these days (what else?), but the woods and quiet fields are still open to the public, & here, just by the great mis-shapen beech in the photo, we found a treasure of sweet chestnuts and picked up a kilo of the plumpest, pricking our fingers and yelping as we foraged among the damp bright leaves. Whereupon we started looking out for fungi too, and made a splendid collection, from the wood margin and later from damp green pasture. The edible count went: Macrolepiota rhacodes, a parasol mushroom variant; a good handful of Fairy Rings (Marasimus oreades); two fine young Shaggy Manes (Coprinus comatus) and a heap of good old field mushrooms.
Pasta al funghi with garlic for our dinner, mushrooms and eggs for breakfast, and plenty left for Sunday supper. The fascination of foraging for food grows on us, year by year (I turned Peter on to this game, ha, I remember there was a time he wouldn't touch a puffball for fear of curling up like a hoop, vomiting blood and dying of kidney damage. Now there's no stopping him). Probably a sign of a worn out brain, more interested in dinner than anything intellectual. Sad, really. A girl that knew all Dante once (slight exaggeration) lives to revel in this exciting thought: Hey, now I can make that terrific Elizabeth David chestnut and chocolate cake for Christmas.
Reading: Band Of Gypsys, because I've finally got round to tackling the online edit. It'll be a lot more different than the first three second editions: this book suffered badly in the making, and I'll explain why later. And still La Peste, which is truly wonderful. A well deserved Nobel, that one (if Nobels can ever be well-deserved, being so daft and annoying sometimes as to tarnish the good ones)
Missing: Harper's Island! What a loss. Following: Fast Forward, though I don't really like it, it is too stupid (& not following Defying Gravity, which literally, so to speak, took stupidity to new levels); but still not out of the City in the Sky, and still not started 3rd season of The Wire.
It's been colder, today and yesterday, which is a welcome respite, but nothing yet like the respite of last year, snow and ice on Bowfell at the end of October, how great that was. And it's the eleventh month of my forever war, and I don't think I'll be home for Christmas.