Winter is coming!

Last fortnight has been glorious sunshine. Admittedly the mornings have been chilly but then its dawn and even in the height of summer dawn is often chilly (though a damn sight earlier of course). Later dawns mean that Siena and I can enjoy some beautiful sunrises, Siena often stops and gazes into the distance giving the illusion that she is having deep thought, when as evidenced by her suddenly sprinting off, she actually thinks she can see a bird. For what its worth, if it is a bird its long gone by the time Siena gets even halfway towards it, but usually its just a tuft of darker grass or even a cow-pat – neither of which are especially perturbed by her approach. Friday was mostly wet, but today, suddenly its winter. 3°C and sleet. In fact as I sit in the kitchen, there are a few flakes of snow.

Last Monday I became a great uncle to Frank. Suzannah my neice (ie one of my brother’s daughters d’uh) is the first of my nieces to have a baby. I sent a card with his first Peter rabbit toy.

This week was Delia’s birthday. No surprise presents from me this time though; at Delia’s request I had ordered a handmade messenger bag from one of my recent website clients – she’s not selling live yet but shows her stuff. Delia was pleased with how well-made it was. Val (the weebaglady) has a house over in Lageyrat across the valley from us. Her website sprang from when we had met her and Graham, her partner, on the Voie Verte walking Siena. Delia also got a book from me (again not a surprise) by the Skeptics Guide to the Universe. She had made a special request for her birthday breakfast and I happily obliged – long slow cooked… creamy scrambled egg, bacon and toast. Her day was spent just relaxing and that evening we went to our local Italian. For a week day evening it was crowded, we had to sit by the door, which wasn’t so bad. The food was, as usual great. We enjoyed a carb excess, me with a veal escalope and chips Delia with a tagliatelle carbonara. Nothing very exotic but just what we wanted. We had a three chocolate entremet for dessert.

The food theme continues with yesterday. Two friends came to lunch, Jayne, who looks after Siena in return for any computer work they need doing, such as, this time, getting google to stick to English. We had slow cooked leg of lamb with assorted vegetables. Jayne had never eaten lamb so I figured rather than traditional slightly pink slices, it would be better to have the lamb equivalent of pulled pork. Our friends also enjoyed the handful of roasted chestnuts we served with other titbits before the lamb. For the veggies we had swede, sweet potato, cabbage, parsnip, carrot, peppers, courgette and tomato all roasted in garlic oil. Cheese and then orange and lemon sorbet for dessert. Jayne was so taken with the chestnuts she went out with Delia and Siena and gathered a bag of them. Even though they have already been harvested, there are still plenty around the edges of the grove. Its a pity Delia doesn’t like them or we’d be having chestnuts with everything!

Here’s the birthdy girl last year, the seaside a bit later than this year.

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