06 July 2008

weekend pleasures

I had decided to have a break from work this weekend and enjoy some time away from the wretched literature review. I've been longing to go to the seaside all week but the lull in summer weather put paid to those plans. I had to make do with a sneak look at the river via Wapping Old Stairs on the way home from my mum's.

It was cold and windy down on the river and by Sunday the weather was even more dismal. Time to break the truce with the domestic clothes moths and set about vacuuming under the beds (normally unheard of) and inside the wardrobe. The impetus for this burst of energy was sparked I suspect by something young John said. I foolishly asked him one day what he thought I collected. "Only dust" he said. Too, too harsh.

Now I try really hard not to be a collector. For a start, there is all that extra dust; London makes enough dust of its own without any extra help from me. Plus the house is too small. I have to try hard to keep my magpie instincts under control though. I have a larger than necessary shoe collection, of course (and I'm very grateful to other women for assuaging my guilt on this point). And more cardigans than a heroine from a Barbara Pym novel can do justice to. There are also too many books around, but my nostalgic affection for the library service and forays into reading and swapping means that addiction is at least managed.

All of these pale into insignificance against the collecting habit that I have struggled most to control - my affair with fabric, sown in a childhood spent visiting haberdashers, cloth merchants and market stalls with my mum. My cupboard is less full than it used to be, though there are a few bits and pieces hidden away. While I was vacuuming the cupboards (honestly) I unearthed this little collection of Liberty silks which I have had for more years than I care to remember.

I get these out everynow and then, smooth them, admire them. I started to make this patchwork which has been waiting for years to be finished. But I find it so difficult to cut into that beautiful silk and I'm not sure whether it will ever be finished.

I even find it hard to cut some of the things that I have grown . My greed normally gets the better of me, that and the fact that it will go to seed if it is not eaten. I had a few leaves of this delicious peppery rocket I've been growing in the garden for lunch.

These Charlotte potatoes, dug up on the plot this afternoon in a lull in the wind and showers, didn't pose any challenge. We had no trouble eating them for tea with some mange touts. which were also ready to pick.

And no trouble eating these meringues.

Back to the everyday tomorrow.


j said...

those are beautiful potatoes. I had to google mange touts.

your patchwork is lovely, lovely lovely! whatever you do, don't let it languish. keep it somewhere where you can see and enjoy.

thank you for the views of Wapping Old Stairs. I hope you get to the sea sometime soon; I enjoyed your pictures of the shore.

Elizabeth said...

beautiful produce from your garden, those potatoes are to die for!! British gardeners are the best!!!!