Saturday, April 23, 2011

This and that




So, here it is, Easter Saturday and I’m home alone. In this little town where I live, we have an annual sailing regatta – at Easter. Now even though M has not taken his little sailing dinghy down to the beach he is involved with the races. Today he is in the patrol boat. His job will be to rescue anyone who has the misfortune of falling into the sea; broken mast; upturned dinghy etc. etc. He may very well be busy today as the wind is pretty strong out there. And it is very, very cool today. There is no promised sunshine to be seen. However, the sailing crowd seems to relish these conditions, apparently it makes the racing more exciting (even if your fingers fall off with the cold) and there is a good turnout from southern Tasmania.

Some of the larger boats sailed down from just outside Hobart last night as part of the weekend’s racing program and some very brave souls have set up camp on the foreshore. The committee of the sailing club here ensure that there are meals and drinks (particularly hot ones!) available and there is entertainment at the club on both Saturday and Sunday nights. M is also working the bar tonight as he enjoys the singer who will be performing (and it means he’s in for free). I may wander down later but it could be difficult leaving a warm room to brave the walk down the street in the wind and possibly rain. Hmmm we will just have to wait and see.

But on a positive note I have had a wonderful success with my sourdough trials. A big thanks must go to Kate from Vegetable Vagabond fame on this count. I visited Kate at her pretty home and wonderful, wild garden last week to collect some multigrain that she had ordered for me through her Garden Shed business. Naturally I stopped for coffee and a chat and Kate broke out her fantastic South Australian Haigh’s chocolates. I was very strong and only had one (I think). They are very yummy. Anyway, I digress. Whilst I was there I asked Kate about sourdough starters and baking, did she have any helpful hints? Well, she very kindly handed over some wonderful rye sourdough starter from her fridge, told me about cast iron camp ovens (cheaper than Le Creuset cookware) and their beneficial use. I was very excited about all of this and thought that M might have an old camp oven in the shed. So with many, many thanks to Kate I took myself off to collect a friend who needed a ride home. 

But, I didn’t get very far down the road when I espied Pickle, Kate’s jack russell terrier, who had been for a wander into town, on his own and was in big trouble. He was playing with a couple of other small dogs and a young boy obviously on his way home from school. I stopped the car and wandered over to the pavement where I called Pickle by name. He came running up and I grabbed him quickly. I asked the young boy if he knew where Pickle lived and he pointed to Kate’s house so I was pretty sure that I had the right dog. I put him in the back and gave him a talking to while I turned the car around and drove back to Kate’s. She heard me arrive and came out and the first words that I said were “This IS Pickle isn’t it?” I was so worried that I had stolen some poor child’s pet. Luckily it was and with Kate holding Pickle (firmly) in her grasp I left.

I collected my friend and drove us home and when we arrived at my place I asked B if he wanted to stop as M had just arrived home from a job. The decision was affirmative and M said that he would drive B home after they had both had a beer. It was at that point that I asked M if he had a camp oven in the shed that I could use for my bread. Answer: No, but I’ve got one that’s a bit effeminate! But no, he didn’t even have a girly one so I had to pay a visit to the hardware shop in town. They didn’t have an oven that was the right size but they did have a saucepan and the wooden handle screwed off very nicely. I haven’t used it yet as the first batch of Kate’s starter produced a large loaf and I baked it on a baking sheet instead. I gave strict instructions to M that it was NOT to be cut whilst warm but even so, by the time I came in from the garden a lot of it had disappeared and he wormed his way out of trouble by saying that it was wonderful. And it was.

On another note, we had a long discussion with Miss D, the five year old grand-daughter this week about “Where does the Easter Bunny live?” So after dismissing the idea that he might be in the magic cave with Father Christmas, we thought that it must be a gigantic magic burrow where the Easter eggs can be stored. She is soooo excited about the Easter Bunny coming tonight I’m not sure that there’ll be much sleep.

By the way, the other news is that my younger daughter sent me a text last week to tell me that she is getting married! Congratulations, I sent back, but please give me some time to lose some weight. “No rush” she said, it’ll be on Daydream Island in 2013!” That should give me a good chance, don’t you think?  She’s already living with the man involved in the story. He was the one that nearly died earlier this year in a motorbike accident. I think the wedding is the silver lining of that event! A near death experience tends to put things into perspective and realise what love really is. Good luck to them both and hopefully the magic will still be there in 2013. (And I’ll be a size 14).



  1. Wonderful, Jan! I so enjoyed your visit and was glad to help out with the sourdough starter. I have just this moment waved goodbye to a group who came for a sourdough workshop last night and then again this morning.... sourdough sure is popular!

  2. It certainly is Kate. I have another friend who asked me how I was going as she said that she had killed her starter! I have given her your recipe as she is determined to give it another go. She is 76 and still going very well.