Woke up early and went for a bracing walk with a few friends — sun rising like a thunderclap, birds all singing at once, cloudless skies. Temperatures soaring by 5am.
Not bracing at all, that adjective is quite wrong; it was a leisurely amble with pauses to yawn.The smell of eucalyptus on the hilltop was bracing in a medicinal way and there were grey squirrels darting up and down the trunks of oak trees. Last week I read a review of a book entitled Outwitting Squirrels. It can’t be done.
Back home I read American recipes for Thanksgiving turkey and looked at pics of my friend Annie and her family enjoying a dinner together. How lovely.
Said to the housemate and a neighbour, ‘I’m thinking of stuffing and roasting a Thanksgiving sort of turkey for Christmas. With cranberry relish (à la Ms Moon) and Mary Christine’s pumpkin pie and butternut squash with seven spices from Lebanon (à la Syd) and Pam’s shoe peg corn with cream cheese, lots of butter and chopped green chillies and jalapenos.’
‘You’re completely mad,’ they both said in unison. ‘The temperature here at Christmas reaches 40 degrees Celsius/104 degrees Fahrenheit. Who eats a stuffed roast turkey in a heatwave? What people want to eat is watermelon and ice cream.’
So that is that.
My neighbour B came around and gave me a basket of apricots from her tree, gorgeous and blushing red. Unfortunately they are mouth-puckeringly sour, so I am going to make apricot crumble with lots of brown demerara sugar.
Still in mild shock from the the scary supper the other night, but the former art teacher has decided to turn 80 again this year and wants a party. Her birthday is 27 December, so we shall go around and celebrate her 80th birthday for the third time. One of the best ways to get over a dire social event is to go right out and have another social celebration, rather like climbing back onto a horse after falling off.
The hydrangeas are producing big blue mopheads, perfect for a summer Christmas bouquet. The bluest blue you can imagine.