Sunday, 30 September 2007

Family Resemblance Still Sinking In

This is an old snap of me at about 22. The face is very similar to that of my father.

It has been quite a shock at my advanced age to see my father's face for the first time. The photograph was taken when he was a young man, and apart from the hairline, the physical details: eyes, nose, mouth and chin are virtually identical to mine as a young woman. I have seen my face for 65 years in the mirror, and often thought I did not resemble my mother very much and wondered who I did resemble. Well, now I know. My niece says that we look like twins and she can see a strong resemblance to Dorothy. In the photo I was prepared to see a similarity to me, but not prepared for the strength of this and the emotions it would cause.

I have dug out some snaps from my youth, and several of them, including one in particular (above) illustrates the similarity. I shall try and send some to Mykel, who sent me the snap of my father. I shall consult with Dorothy how I can transfer my father's snap to my iphoto collection so that I can put it together with one of me at a similar age.

The lamb stew was delicious. I shall attempt a beef stew or casserole soon.

First Snap of Actual Father and Cooking Again

Mykel has just sent me a snap of my father as a young man. Apart from being male, he looks exactly the same as me when young. Scary. Have also had a card from Cherie who has moved to Newton Abbot and sent me her new address. Mykel tells me through Facebook that Roberto is having fun in France and possibly buying a bar in Roscoff. I feel a trip to La Belle France coming on.

It was a bit nippy today so decided to make a lamb stew, or rather a mutton stew with some mutton from Borough Market which I had in the freezer, and strangely possibly, some stock from the pig's trotter, also from the freezer. In addition: mushrooms and wild dried mushrooms, carrots, celery, huge amounts of parsley, potatoes, bayleaves, onions, garlic, seasoning and cinnamon. And a teeny bit of chili. Also made a cobbler with some frozen summer fruit, the cobbler of which is rather heavy on top. Did it from the recipe on the fruit packet, but should have trusted my instincts and made a sponge mix and poured it on the top, or a simple crumble mix. The fruit is somewhat overwhelmed. I shall report on the lamb stew later.

Meanwhile had a snacky lunch consisting of chips and spare ribs from the Lye Torng. Could not purchase any more dye today, so will get some tomorrow after the first guy has quoted to paint the sitting room, and before the second guy ditto arrives later in the afternoon.

Saturday, 29 September 2007

Ad Nauseam

I like this one. Quite evil really. Never had a cent from HK so emailed Sam Forsdyke and offered to invoice them on advice from Madeleine who is a top agent and all round good egg. We shall see.

Received a kind email from someone locally saying they had read my blog which reminded them a bit of Kenneth Williams' diary 'without the bile'. Sweet of them to say so, and much complimented. I may yet do a bit of bile if ITV keep thwarting me about the paltry sum of money they offered (£50 per 16 hour day with half an hour's break) while being happy to repeatedly show my gorgeous face on the screen for nothing in the Britain's Best Dish programme. I suspect I am not a current favourite at Telly Towers for refusing to sign their reputedly 'notorious' release form.

Julian thinks I should have the wall plugs changed in the sitting room and should ask the painters to do this. Was somewhat reluctant as decorators tend only to want to decorate. Anyway we discussed the paint which would of course be Dulux brilliant white matte, and I shall get a quote with and without the paintwork as Julian doesn't trust them to do the paintwork properly. I think this could wait anyway, as the main eyesore is the walls. The wood people have recommended a coating they can provide but say I should discuss this with the guy doing the floors.

Tellyface, Redecoration and Dyeing Failure

Salsa watching.

Was idly making a call or two with the telly on a couple of days ago and suddenly my face loomed up large on the screen with my Deidre Barlow's saying 'bangers and mash'. Quite put me off my call. Apparently I have popped up several times during the South part of Britain's Best Dish, but fortunately I have managed to miss most of these.

Now have three guys willing to quote for laying the floor, two for the decorating, so only have to arrange to get rid of the sofa and get some hairy-arsed guy to carry the TV downstairs before I can begin sorting out the sitting room.

The dyeing was a bit of a failure, but still determined, I shall purchase some more dye and put the pillow shams in separately with one lot, and redip the quilt with another lot. If it is no good I shall try again as I am determined to succeed with at least one of my awful quilts. I am trying to persuade myself that I should not just chuck it away, and that if I manage to get the colour more even by repeated dyeing, it will look fabulous.

Around and About on Saturday

went to Elephant and Castle so-called 'Elefest' which consisted of a few things going on at the shopping centre. I watched a bit of salsa, which was on half an hour late, and was banned from taking any snaps in the shopping centre! so went home, but fortunately I had already taken a few.

Had lunch with a Pimms in the Lye Torng ( known as the 'thong' by my friend Davide). Later, I decided to dye the fairly awful American quilts I had bought in a drunken moment on QVC. Bought two lots of turquoise dye and stuck the first one in. Not sure if it will work as the machine is really overloaded. We shall see.

Have decided the sitting room needs painting and flooring before Christmas so will order the remainder of the flooring and get some quotes, plus some quotes for painting, since this will have to be done first.

They are putting the second kitchen in next door, so they have converted the house into two flats without planning permission which is rather a nuisance, since I could now have two possibly appalling sets of neighbours instead of one. I am now thinking of selling and moving to Ireland, since it is apparently the best place to live in the world, and England only the 29th, according to a recent survey.

Friday, 28 September 2007

Dull, dull, dull.

Dorothy and Julian around last night bearing a meal from Iran E Ma (if I have spelled it correctly). This was absolutely delicious and very cheap. Apparently they do special meals on Friday and Saturday nights.

Left some clothes outside for a charity collection and found them scattered all over the road, so had to pick them up and put in the rubbish which is a bit disheartening. My neighbour thought that it might have been a fox which got at them. He also discovered that my TV ariel was put on next doors' roof instead of the roof to this house, which is a bit strange.

Woke up at 6am, fed Malvolio and back to bed until 8.45, then suddenly realised I was working this morning, going to a meeting at a church hall and a cafe. Just made it in time and finished in time for a quick lunch.

Just had an email from my Barcelona friend Stephen, who sent me a youtube clip of him drumming with Gadjo apparently for the last time. Have asked him what he will be doing next. Dorothy discovered him some years ago. He's a really fantastic drummer.

Thursday, 27 September 2007

After 65 years - Triumph With Meringues

Have just discovered I did not put enough sugar in the meringues and should have used a copper bowl to beat the whites in. I do have a copper bowl somewhere but can't find it. I may well try once more but it will definitely be the last time.

Blimey they worked - actually a bit soggy and chewy in the middle, but apparently if cooked more slowly ( I did three quarters of an hour at 140) they would have been firm throughout. I followed a recipe which said you should use 4 tablespoons of sugar per egg white. I think I used slightly less about four heaped dessertspoons. At 65 after years of meringue failure, I now feel quite accomplished. Hope it wasn't a one time fluke. Used the copper bowl for mixing the whites in. And a tiny pinch of salt (apparently could have used vinegar or cream of tartar).

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Corn, Mess and Mushrooms

Found three corncobs for a pound in Sainsbury's. Apparently if you put them into boiling water with a dessertspoon of sugar, bring to the boil, turn off the heat and leave for five to seven minutes they cook to perfection. We shall see. Also found some English strawberries being sold off for just over a pound for a large punnet. Decided to make Eton mess since I had some cream and three egg whites in the fridge. Have never yet successfully made meringue but have tried yet again . We shall see. I rather fancy some Eton mess but could not find any shop meringues today. Saw some chestnut mushrooms from Monaghan, so I will try these with eggs and black forest ham for breakfast tomorrow.

Corn fine, meringues failed as usual. Must never try to make these again.

The chestnut mushrooms are good: just a slightly stronger flavour than ordinary ones.

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Souffles, Work and Floors

Finally, the last three individual souffle dishes have arrived safely so shall consider making some raspberry souffles at some stage soon.

Masses of work at the office. I am attempting to actually take the annual leave and time off in lieu owed, rather than get paid, as I need the rest, but work keeps intervening and I keep getting unavoidable appointments on days when I normally don't work anyway thus creating more time off in lieu. Also the actual amount of work to be done militates against me. Our accountant suggested that I get some help with filing etc. We shall see. Romy and I certainly had a very busy day yesterday and did not get away until after 6.30pm.

Romy is going to give me the name of a guy who fits floors and is properly qualified to do this and other things, so I shall ask him to quote for my living room and hall floor. If possible, I would like to get this finished before Christmas, and time is disappearing fast.

Monday, 24 September 2007

Buying at Bookers and Britain's Best Dish

Found out that sweet pastry tarts are OK if taken out of the fridge hours before serving. Otherwise rock hard.

Went to Bookers with Dorian and bought some dried porcini, a cake tin, two oval stainless steel platters a la HK for shoving food under grills, in ovens etc. to keep warm before serving, and a red striped apron which looks v. professional. And revisited Sainsbury's at Nine Elms as Dorian had to buy some food. I purchased some black forest ham as Tesco have stopped stocking it and I like using it as bacon .

They aired the Britain's Best Dish South, including London, yesterday. Strangely there was a roquefort cheese ice cream as a pudding, the guy poncily injecting grapes with wine etc, and I was glad to see it did not win. Beaten by a gorgeous raspberry and almond frangipane tart which I shall nick the recipe from the website. Also keen to do the pheasant casserole from that programme. Fortunately I did not catch sight of myself failing the interview - they seem to flash past the failures quite quickly, fortunately.

Back from Spain, Lie In and Rocky Tarte

Julian and Dorothy back - Dorothy with awful flu for the past few days, but has to go back to work today because of scheduled stuff.

Woke naturally at 8am. Malvolio also just woke up in the spare room. It is absolutely pouring with rain outside for the first time in ages. And a little chilly. I have turned the pump off in the fishpond as recommended but not sure if the fish will be OK with hibernating as the pond is so shallow and may have a leak as it has to be topped up every couple of days. I am wondering if there is a way to build the sides up a bit to get a better height of water. Unlikely I should imagine as the extra water would press against the sides a lot. Oh well.

The tarte Tatin went rock hard in the fridge. I think sweet pastry reacts this way, as some I kept in the fridge before cooking also did this. Maybe to do with the high fat content. Have taken it out to see if it softens up a bit, or it will have to be chucked away.

Saturday, 22 September 2007

First Mini Tatins

These are the mini tatins I made with the left-over scraps of pastry. Made in a similar way with sugar and butter but not preheated on the hob and just one piece of fruit, pastry on top as usual.

First Pear Tarte Tatin

Made the pear Tarte Tatin. Again, put too much butter in and cooked for too long on the hob. Therefore it was well overcooked in the end, but rather delicious even if a bit overcaramelised. May be unable to eat dinner tonight. Using the remainder of the pastry and pears made some mini tatins which came out rather better.

Still Trying to Give Away a Souffle Dish

Have deliberately stayed in because some woman on the SE1 forum said she would ring re collecting one of the free souffle dishes I offered. The rest have all found a home and the Colander people say they are sending me three more of the individual ones, better wrapped this time.

I was rather worried to see the watery collapse of a pear Tarte Tatin yesterday on the Britain's Best Dish programme. I have made some sweet pastry for mine, and need to buy yet more sugar and butter for putting in my new frying pan. I have peeled and halved the pears in advance, hoping that they will dry out so they hold together when cooking. This can also be done with apples if you don't have good ones.

Dorothy and Julian are getting back today - probably late tonight - from Barcelona. I hope they have managed to enjoy themselves a bit and not spend all their time marketing our little flat.

Friday, 21 September 2007

Pans, New Hairdo and Late Awakening

Managed to force myself into John Lewis yesterday. No copper pans, but I eventually found a rather good small frying pan from Le Creuset, just slightly larger and deeper than the one I already use for Tarte Tatin, so decided to buy it. Fortunately the handle is an integral part of the pan, so suitable for oven use. Must buy some apples or pears and try it out. Romy says she makes her Tarte Tatin with sweet pastry, and I am inclined to agree that this may turn out rather better than puff pastry.

I had a look at the food processors while I was in John Lewis, and I think the small 3200 Magimix might be suitable for me, as it looks as though it does everything I need, but is slightly smaller than the others.

Decided to get my hair done on a whim, so staggered into House of Fraser and fortunately they were able to do it. I now feel slightly more human. And more blonde.

Fetish woke me this morning, but not until 8am, so I had a couple of extra hours of sleep. Winter must be coming, though it is not very cold.

I have taken to ironing my clothes, something I have never done before. Perhaps I am becoming eccentric. Or it could be the novelty of owning a proper ironing board and discovering I can iron quite well sitting down, which I have never done before.

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Depression, Chowder and Barcelona

Have been feeling a bit depressed recently and this seems to make me stay in the house. I kept meaning to hoover or do something useful but could not be bothered. However my recent enthusiasm for cooking eventually kicked in and this evening I made a kind of chowder, frying strips of bacon and onion, adding smoked haddock and prawns and a bit of water, taking the haddock out with the prawns when cooked. Then I added some milk to the liquid, some peas and a bayleaf and a little nutmeg, seasoned, reduced a bit then put back the skinned haddock chunks and prawns before serving. Quite nice.

Sent an email to Colanders as Dorothy insisted that I complain about the broken souffle dishes. Dorothy rang from Spain today. They are considering using a different agent to sell the flat, with a Spanish type arrangement where you tell them how much you want and they then get whatever they can. We shall see. The weather is apparently boiling in Barcelona and they are managing to enjoy themselves a bit, fortunately.

Possums, Nibby and Worries About Bear

Reading about possums, it seems that the brushtail possum is the one who lives in roofs, and lives there all the time at night. To keep it out you can block up the entry points with chicken wire. Also mothballs put in the roofspace can keep it away, or putting household bleach at the entry points. However the possum will die as it is so territorial, unless you build a possum house outside. It needs to be six feet up to protect the possums. Quite a performance but worth it as otherwise it will eat through your wiring and cause fires, poo all over the ceiling etc etc. Not a great prospect. Shall have to tell Nibby.

Nibby is rather worried at the moment about her son, my nephew Bear. His wife wanted to leave him, so he left her in their rented house with their young child. The wife now has a well paid job and two lodgers paying the rent. He has his daughter at weekends and for a couple of nights a week so he is stuck living locally in a small bedsitter. He has some huge tax debts from the past and a job which pays very badly. He has huge difficulty in managing financially. He does have a super girl friend but he thinks she is getting fed up with him because he can't afford to buy her drinks, etc. Nibby tells me he is very depressed and can't see an end to his difficult situation. In addition, all the other work he used to do - painting and decorating etc - is being done incredibly cheaply by East Europeans with whom he cannot compete. I pointed out that we had all had very difficult times when the children were young, that at least he had had the same job for a couple of years and that his girl friend was still with him. Strange that his father has always been very wealthy, but never seems to have helped either of his children. Probably something to do with being remarried twice, though he had no more children.

Monday, 17 September 2007

Broken Souffle Dishes and Grouse Stew

Apart from one email not followed up, there has been no interest in the free souffle dishes. People are either too rich, or don't cook, around here. The other dishes arrived today. Three out of the four were broken. They were not well packed. I shall definitely make a trip to John Lewis to see if I can purchase another three.

Have just made a mini-grouse stew, with one grouse, mushrooms, onions and red wine, for lunch. Shall add some bits and make a soup with the liquid later. Some Italian wild mushrooms maybe.

Blackberry and Apple Pie, Dark Mornings and a Possum Problem

Just made a blackberry and apple pie to use up some spare blackberries and some puff pastry. I shall serve it with blackberry and apple coulis and cream.

It is becoming darker in the mornings and noticeably colder outside. Still no rain but some is promised for tonight.

Last night in bed I was wondering about how Nibby could finally get rid of her possum. She keeps stuffing things in around the roof but the possum always manages to get in, but has to go out hunting during the day. Perhaps there is something which smells nasty to a possum, which she could spray around. Certainly it is not put off by the presence of her tabby point Siamese. I shall have to google around a bit for some ideas.

Sunday, 16 September 2007

Strange things keep coming up on this blog, such as faults directing me to sites I apparently cannot access, so have given up.

Managed to get a not very good but just about adequate Sunday lunch locally. Spoke to Nibby this morning. She is still having a possum problem.

Saturday, 15 September 2007

Tartes Tatin

Croissant Neuf tells me that any small frying pan with oven proof handle will be OK. Marco was fairly obsessed with the copper ones, which would be 15cm wide and 5cm deep. This would generously serve two, so would need two to serve four as small TTs are easier to make. Praps I should find some minipans and make individual ones.

Tatin, Dorothy, Telly and Tea Place

I definitely need to get a small pair of copper pans for tarte Tatin. Shall look online or in John Lewis. Made a couple of small ones today but my containers aren't deep enough. Also put too much butter in so they cooked on the hob rather than caramelised.

Dorothy came around last night to say goodbye before they go to Barcelona today. It seems as though Dorothy's work is going very well and the colleagues are nice guys.

Watched half an hour of HK last night where they changed the kitchens around as a bit of a challenge. Two will be eliminated tonight and presumably we will know the 'winner' on Sunday night.

I noticed that Britain's Best Dish starts at 5pm on Monday. Shall watch it to see if there are any embarrassing glimpses of moi as an unsuccessful candidate. Dreading it already.

I must find someone to drag up to tea in Borough Market as there is a new tea place there. Ever since I suddenly had the obsession with teatime, teasets, teapots, teacloths etc a year or two ago, new tea places have been springing up as though my thoughts were being read. I can't remember what it is but there is a name for when people all over the world seem to have the same idea at the same time.

Friday, 14 September 2007

Souffle Dishes and Tatin

Amazingly good news. Reply from Colanders who told me to keep the souffle dishes and they are sending the ones I actually ordered as well! So I have posted a note to the local forum offering them free to collectors. Have had one demand and managed to give one to a neighbour so far. They are great and the usual price is about £18 so a good freebie.

No word from HK so suspect that is that. Shall put Madeleine on to them about my money when she returns. Also, Romy pointed out that with fewer cooks the recipes need to be much simpler and quicker. Absolutely right. Interesting that none of the new recipes are in the recently published Hell's Kitchen cookbook.

Have peeled some apples and am going to try and make a tarte Tatin. Two problems with this are that my pan is rather shallow and small, and it is not copper. Though I really don't think copper is necessary I would be happier if the pan was a bit deeper. Ah, also half the apples are cookers which may well collapse unpleasantly. Oh well, we shall see. I shall leave the apples unpeeled in the air for a long time which may dry them out and give a better result. I think I will search for a suitable Tatin pan for future efforts. A visit to John Lewis may be necessary.

Thursday, 13 September 2007

Wrong Souffle Dishes from Colanders and Downgraded Menu at Hell's Kitchen

Reply to say that they may not have had any places but someone would have a word with Terry today and see what they could do. Now that the programme is coming to an end I doubt if there will be any places, even just for a drink.

Sent off for four individual souffle dishes to Amazon. They came, and to my horror there were four full sized souffle dishes instead! Have emailed the company, called Colanders, to ask them to collect since the mistake was theirs, but haven't heard anything yet.

Maybe I shan't miss much if we don't get a table at Hell's Kitchen since they have changed the menu to a typical British one. I am rather suspicious that this is ITV being mean about costs . They did have lots of very expensive ingredients when I was there, and I must say that with my inside knowledge, I had almost decided what I would order. Now they are down to fish and chips and cottage pie, nice though these are, the prospect is a little less alluring.

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

And another thing - Madeleine kindly contacted HK since they had offered to pay me the £200 for just doing the work - they had previously promised it would never be broadcast, which is why I agreed to do it - and they said they would send me a revised release form and the money, including the extra £20 I paid online out of my own pocket for the police check they insisted on before I did the work. Nothing has arrived, of course.

Just sent them an email asking if their invitation was for a stand-in drink since I hadn't heard anything and tomorrow was my last date. Apparently my details had been sent to their 'celebrity wrangler' named Terry. Dear me.

Boring Souffle and Hell's Kitchen Pain in Ass - Again!

Made the cheese souffle. It eventually rose, but was rather a disappointment because it made me decide that there were better ways of eating cheese and eggs. Someone was supposedly coming for lunch, but eventually turned up an hour late and only wanted to drink lots of coffee and smoke cigarettes, so I didn't cook the souffle until dinner time.

A few days ago I had an email from Hell's Kitchen inviting me to be a 'stand-in' diner in the restaurant. It seemed they were inviting celebrities to dinner but invited an extra ten people to champagne in the bar, out of which four or more were 'randomly' selected to have dinner. I had to think about this a bit, since the place was miles away, and most of my friends would not be interested, even in the free drinks . I eventually selected a friend to whom I explained the situation, and got back to HK giving three possible dates - for their convenience. I have never heard back from them. Tomorrow night is the last date we gave. I do hope they don't contact me at the last moment. If they weren't going to bother, I really don't know why they made the offer. Oh well, it is typical of their behaviour so far, so I shouldn't really be surprised.

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Cooking and Hell's Kitchen

It's me again. Carried away with cooking, and Dorothy and Julian having hungrily woffled up my souffle and feuillantine, I then proceeded to attempt to make nougat, which failed, but came out as a kind of nut fudge. Delicious. I shall attempt to make a cheese souffle today, following an Elizabeth David recipe. We shall see.

Jim Davidson has finally been expelled from HK after some offensive homophobic remarks. The main victim of these, Brian, will no doubt feel happier now.

Just spoke to Miss Bettaware who has yet another booking for her show. She will be too grand for us soon. She was trying to comment on this blog but it was not allowing any comments, or indeed, any editing. I do hope it will be back to normal soon.

Sunday, 9 September 2007

Bag Lady is a Pastry Chef

Miss Bettaware posted Dorothy's snore-stoppers. Have not yet had a report as to their effectiveness, but a kind thought anyway. It seems that Miss Bettaware is fighting off the bookings for more shows in and around Clacton. She is becoming quite a star.

Just made another batch of feuillantines and bought some more raspberries. Not sure if Dorothy and Julian would rather try some of these or some souffle. Have also made an almond (Marco used hazelnut but didn't have any) frozen torron kind of thing to be served - again with raspberries. Have not dared look in the freezer to ascertain its progress. The main problem with all this culinary activity is that there is no one else to eat the stuff! It is all sweet too, though yesterday I made a tortilla using several spare egg yolks.

I may be forced to have an omelet for breakfast tomorrow since I have another three egg yolks left. There were masses of spare blackberries which I have cooked up with apple to freeze and use later in a blackberry pie or crumble.

Friday, 7 September 2007

Malvolio and the Vet

Fell asleep so had to rush to get to the vet. Malvolio weighs a ton. The vet said it was a huge weight increase. He had a blood test and I managed to get him some more insulin. It seems he has a couple of ulcers in the angles of each jaw which may be an early sign of carcinoma which is rather dismal news, so these just have to be observed. I shall have to be much stricter with his diet and cut right down on the dry food. The vet is going to ring and let me know if his insulin needs to be increased.

Useless Vet and Not Bad Souffle

The vet is being a complete pain. Having ordered on Monday some catfood and insulin to be delivered today, I rang this morning to find they had not ordered all the food and wanted to test the cat before supplying the insulin. Then said they had no appointments for today - until I said I had run out of insulin. Now have to drag poor old Malvolio over there this afternoon.

Just attempted the blackberry souffle from Hell's Kitchen (above). Made in half quantities from the HK cookbook, however it seemed a bit raw inside so stuck it back after eating some. The oven is off but hot and the rest seems to be rising up nicely. I think the problem is that I am cooking in a larger souffle dish which is the only one I have. It is delicious, anyway.

Thursday, 6 September 2007

First Half of Fiddler Very Good

Bit of a nightmare yesterday. Got most people into their seats. First half very good but interval at 4.30. Had been told show was finishing at 5pm, now 5.30. Spent the whole interval trying to contact the cab company who were coming at 5. Missed the second act but the cab company eventually replied and agreed to come back at 5.30. Had a cold drink and went out of the disabled entrance to wait for the cab. The show finished and two very elderly people, one in a wheelchair, waiting for the promised cab. Various excuses from the company ensued, they hung up on the phone three times, and they eventually turned up an hour late for their customers! They were Ruskin cars and are almost as bad as the Southwark Dial-a-Ride, who failed to get a customer to the theatre at all last time we arranged a trip. They also arrived over an hour late. It would be good to know of a company who could provide tail-lift cars in central London. When we were in South Downs we found an excellent company in Chichester who had no problems arriving and delivering people on time for theatre outings etc.

Romy turned up from Spain today bringing presents for all, including two lovely fans for me which I find I have mistakenly left in the office. I may have to pop in and fetch them in case of an Indian summer.

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

Watching HK and Blackberry Souffle

I have watched HK for a couple of nights now. I have never heard of half the 'celebrities' as usual. However, Rosie Boycott is my new incarnation in girls' pastries. I found it rather boring to watch, but am hoping it will build up a bit.

Still sleeping very long hours. I think I will try and make the blackberry souffle, though I have not been able to get hold of creme de Mures and may have to substitute something else. I may also see if I can purchase some venison and wild mushrooms in Borough Market on Friday or Saturday and make that dish too. We shall see.

Going to Fiddler on the Roof at the Savoy today. Let's hope that all forty manage to make it to the theatre without too many problems.

Monday, 3 September 2007

TV Working!

Great stuff! Louise at the Thai place suggested I bought an indoor arial and tried the TV. It works! so I can watch HK while it is on. When I moved here some years back an indoor arial would not work with the TV at all. Now it does. Also, Louise tells me that she uses her cable arial hole downstairs with the TV and it acts as an arial though she does not have cable. I may well purchase a portable TV and keep it downstairs, getting rid of the large TV upstairs since I will hardly ever be watching it. Must tell Dorothy not to bother taping HK.

No Telly and Oversleeping

I am now wondering if my neighbour moved my sky dish so I cannot watch TV because the noise was annoying him. Not that I am paranoid at all! Irritatingly, the one thing I would love to watch because of my four days misery is Hell's Kitchen, which is on for two weeks from tonight. I have purchased a hand held TV which might not arrive for a while, so will have to ask at the pub if I can watch it on someone elses TV for a day or two. Dorothy says they will try and record the whole thing for me, but after it finishes, and they may not be able to do it, which is kind but I don't want to wait for two weeks only to find out they have been unable to do it.

Back to work again tomorrow. Not sure what time I will get in because I have been sleeping a twelve hour night - maybe if I go to bed at 6pm ? but if anyone lets me watch HK on TV I won't get to bed until about 10.45 or 11pm. I doubt if it will happen as I don't really know anyone that well around here, so 6pm is a distinct possibility and will get me to work well on time. I really don't know why I am so tired, especially since I have a lunchtime nap at weekends. Must be old age.

Sunday, 2 September 2007

Lazy Sunday

The real celebrities for whom we were standing in are at the studios today being filmed to be shown tomorrow night. I almost feel for them, especially if there are any oldies. I can't wait to see it. As I don't have a telly, Dorothy says they will put it on a disc for me - but it is on for an hour and a half every night for the next couple of weeks. I am wondering whether it is worth buying one of those mini-tellies, or whether the reception here will be too bad.

Strolled along the South Bank today and had a coffee and croissant. The kiosk there is hopeless, not only no Observer, but no papers at all, just bad magazines. They should lose the concession if that is what it is. There were masses of people around who would have bought papers to read with their coffees had there been any. Went past the London Eye and living statues, and got a bus back to Elephant to buy a paper. Had a latino lunch in La Bodeguita then strolled over to the Thai place for some cokes and a relaxing afternoon. They are redecorating a bit inside and it already looks much smarter.