Yes, another gallimaufry, many months after the first. Gallimaufry? A collection of unrelated things. A lovely word, isn’t it?
To start, just something pretty … flowers on the breakfast table. The sweet Williams were just the tiny ones, the off-cuts, which I put into a tiny jug and which are now flowering; the red rose from bouquet which consisted mainly of chrysanthemums; and a single Gertrude Jekyll rose from the garden, with its lovely scent.
Followed by a not very good start to the day. Our car had developed a water leak. Husband located the cause – a crack in the radiator hose. As we have an appointment tomorrow (and thus require the car) we phoned our local garage but they are fully booked and can’t have our car in until later in the week, or even next week and, in any case, they suggested it would be too risky to drive the car to the garage even though it is only 2 miles from our house, as the said cracked hose with water spewing out, could cause damage if the engine over-heated.
And so I phoned the AA (Automobile Association) as we are fully covered not only for roadside breakdown services but also for home start. Within half an hour a very pleasant man-with-yellow-AA-van arrived, and while I made him a cup of coffee, he effected the repair. He said it was good for at least a month of two, but as the coolant in the radiator which contained not only anti-freeze but a substance which protected the engine all year round had leaked with the water, having a proper garage repair sooner rather than later would be a good idea. I will get on to that forthwith.
Before he left, I just had to take a photo …
Years ago, AA men travelled around on motorcycles in khaki uniforms, sedately, bolt upright in the saddle, and if you had an AA badge on the front your car, they would salute you! Hard to believe today, but as I took his photo, this AA man saluted me (with a big grin, too!)
Something nicer than a cracked water hose was the delivery of a box from L’Occitane which contained a present for our younger son whose birthday it is tomorrow …
And with is some samples of their products which I will try out in due course …
It seems that everywhere now we are being encouraged – along with serums – to use oils, whether it is for our hair or our skin. I’ve yet to try anything like this and I trust that all these oils and serums aren’t going to add to the fatbergs that are now appearing in the sewerage systems throughout the country. When washed off our bodies, these have to go somewhere, don’t they?
Next, lunch. While husband painted the door frame and eaves on the summerhouse I made cauliflower cheese for lunch.
Just a simple meal, cauliflower steamed until tender in a cheddar cheese sauce with the addition of 1 vegetable Oxo cube, and then popped into a grain dish and grilled. A sprinkling of chopped parsley makes a white-ish meal look more appetizing.
And finally, a book …
I have just finished reading three most enjoyable books, all fiction, and what might be classed as ‘light novels’ but definitely not chick lit. Ella Griffin’s two gorgeous novels, The Memory Shop and The Flower Arrangement (I don’t know which I enjoyed the most, they are both excellent reads), and more recently Veronica Henry’s A Family Recipe, with a dual narrative, part set in 1942 and part now, connected by characters and setting (the city of Bath.) I have several books in my To Be Read pile but I wasn’t in the mood for any of them, and so took down from the shelf the kind of book which used to be known as a ‘bedside book’, the kind of book people used to buy specially for a guest bedroom, to put alongside a carafe of water and a posy of flowers.
Although I read this when I first bought it, almost a decade ago, it certainly merits re-reading, and this book of short essays was just what filled the space between the end of reading three lovely novels and what I might choose next, a light sorbet of a book, a reading palate cleanser.
Modern Delight is an anthology in aid of Dyslexia Action and the London Library. It was published in 2009 by Faber & Faber, and has a Foreword by Sophie, Countess of Wessex. She says …
“Back in 1949, J B Priestley, that self-declared ‘grumbler’, write a magical collection of short essays on the little things in le that caused him delight. A gin-and-tonic, the sound of football, detective stories in bed, meeting a friend, smoking in a hot bath, and charades were among the many things that he found delightful. This fascinating new book, Modern Delight, updates the J B Priestley idea and places it in the current context, sharing the delights of people from all walks of life.”
People who have contributed to this book include: Joan Bakewell, Antony Beevor, Alain de Botton, Sebastian Faulks, Stephen Fry, Michael Morpurgo, Kate Mosse, Bill Nighy, Jeremy Paxman, Justgine Picardie, Nigel Slater, Roy Strong, [the late] Sue Townsend, and Lynne Truss.
Topics include, and not necessarily by the above writers, Paris, Pleasures of the countryside, Beekeeping, London parks, French movies, Charity shops, Family life, Sunday breakfast at home, Red toenails, Rescue chickens, and My cats.
I am now going to see if I can locate a copy of the original J B Priestley book mentioned by Sophie, The Countess of Wessex.
Until next time.