Saturday, January 14, 2012

It's Seventeen O'clock...

…and twenty-six degrees centigrade out there.  Did that sound natural?  Think I’ve got the hang of this metric measurement system yet?  (I realize the time was military, not metric, but it tied in with the Family Guy reference.)  Today I made porridge for breakfast.  The instructions listed one serving size as 40 grams of dry porridge boiled with 300 milliliters of water.  Thanks to my kitchen conversion chart and my liquid measuring cup, with its clearly marked measurements, I managed to create a halfways decent breakfast.  I do sort of wish we had a kitchen scale, though.  Cooking might become a more precise art around here, rather than a crapshoot.  As it is, I’ve only followed recipes on the two desserts we’ve made.  Everything else is just riding on the hope that I have the faintest idea of what will happen if I mix crumbled mace and a heaping mound of curry to the kidney beans.  Sometimes I feel like I’m playing Jenga in the kitchen: If I add any more cheese to this casserole, the whole thing might collapse.

Everyone knows now that we have cows moseying around down here.  That means I no longer stop and gawk any time we see one (and Ivan breathes a great sigh of relief), but it certainly doesn’t mean that I don’t persistently comment on them any time we happen to spot one (or even hear one, for that matter).  Having gotten that out in the open, I would like to comment on a cow we saw last night.  It was chained in someone’s yard… (digression: I’m purposely using the neuter pronoun to refer to said bovine because Ivan argues it was actually a bull.  Unless it has huge redneck horns, I like to refer to all cattle as cows.  But since he’s probably right, I won’t blatantly call it a she; however, I will defer to the non-specific it.) …along with three other cows.  All cows we have seen so far have been the same brownish color (farmers correct me, but I believe it may be commonly referred to as bay or roan).  This cow was that same golden brown on top, but its stomach and legs were the archetypal white and black spotted.  A perfectly horizontal line defined the two colors.  The cow’s body could have been (and someday may become) a canvas, the artist’s representation of a heifer’s sunset splashed across its skin.  If that cow were a bowl of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, it would be a great lump of Karamel Sutra on top of a marvelous mound of Milk and Cookies.

Unfortunately, I was too busy salivating over the ice cream cow to manage a single photo.  Terribly sorry.

For anyone having a drink while reading this post, please raise your glasses for a very awesome woman’s very awesome birthday.  Her name is Grandma Hart and, despite the fact that her granddaughter is some-odd thousands of miles away, should still be enjoying her birthday thoroughly.  So very like her daughter (my mom), Grandma practically eats, sleeps and breathes for the benefit of others.  Her house is bedecked with photos of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  She makes every holiday special and loves spending time with her family.  A very enthusiastic HAPPY BIRTHDAY to you, Grandma!

Today is the third Saturday I spent out of routine.  In Erie, every Saturday, Ivan and I took our weekly trip to the mall.  First we’d stop by Starbucks and get a drink.  Then we’d do our non-grocery shopping, typically swinging by Target or JC Penney.  Next, we’d go to Wegmans and finish up our shopping.  If we had no dinner plans and spent under $60 on a week’s worth of groceries, we might get India takeout and have dinner at home while watching Netflix streaming.  This might not seem like fun to anyone who doesn’t like shopping, but we had a blast.  Our Saturdays were like a really lame (but super fun) weekly date.  Now I need to recreate that kind of Saturday date routine here.  This isn’t going to be easy.

Let’s put things into perspective: The IGA grocery store where we get many of our groceries is about as large as Wegmans produce section; Ali’s market, where we also get many of our groceries, is as large as an off-brand self-serve corner gas station (but way cleaner and nicer); the fruit stand, where we get much of our produce, is a stand and has no name, so its diminutive size should be evident; the airport doesn’t seem to have any gates, once you get off the plane, you are standing on the tarmac and there is only one door to get into the airport (I am able to appreciate the lack of a confusing layout, though).

Because I posted no pictures today, here is the clip from Family Guy that I referenced in the title:

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