supermouse: Simple blue linedrawing of a stylised superhero mouse facing left (Default)
I went out to Wigan with Random, on, I think, the last shopping Saturday before Christmas. The weather was terrible. I had a really good time shopping. Random was willing to explore everywhere until we got tired, and also willing to wait while I had a good look at what was on offer. It was all really good-tempered and pleasant, and having time to stop and get my bearings meant I didn't get overwhelmed or end up triggering a migraine. There was only one screaming child.

At one point, we were following a real life Calvin, although (mercifully) Hobbes was not in sight. During all of this retail wandering, I saw not one thing that I thought would make a nice present for someone I know. I'm wondering if part of that is that I've barely seen anyone - the last time I was in Nottingham was for the Novacon before last.

At the stop where we get off, there's a really nice café close by. It does fancy coffees and teas, basic grub, booze if you really must have booze with your sandwiches and Wigan Tapas: a selection of small pies served with I forget what. There's also Fizz and Chips; different sorts of fish goujons, chips, mushy peas, tartare sauce and two glasses of bubbly. I'd love to take my mum there.

The last place we went to was a booze shop with a wide range of single malts, including the one I really want - yet again, I didn't have *quite* enough money to buy a bottle of the 21 yo. But it's £125 and one day, I will. I got liqueur de espices (*not* liqueur de pain de espices, gingerbread liqueur, but a spice liqueur with anise and mace among other things), ginger liqueur and 'Old English Bush Liqueur Cordial' which, even after reading the label, could be *anything*.

Random set us off the bus a full mile down the road for the convenience of the bus driver(!) but I don't think it's done me too much harm. I got back, and I've put the dishwasher on, plus I've got lamb stew cooking right now, full of leftover spiced roast vegetables and unwanted lamb chops, plus some fresh veg and meat and a lamb stock cube.

On the whole, a really, really good day. Probably my most fun day in the last two months. Thank you, Random.

SNOW!!

Jan. 5th, 2010 03:31 pm
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We've got seven inches of new-fallen snow here. More is falling as I type. I am expecting rain tomorrow, but for now, it's all very pretty.

Oddly enough, the post arrived as usual this morning.

Solstice

Dec. 22nd, 2009 10:02 am
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The solstice was yesterday. I woke up feeling very bleh and not remotely celebratory. I had a duck to roast (actually, two) but not much to go with it and I wasn't sure I could be bothered to go out into the cold and snow to get more.

So Pol took me and Radnom to Bolton Market, where we all picked delicious noms for the next three days or so. Then Pol asked if he should/could invite people over, and I said yes, as long as he was prepared to do the host thing.

After that, I got cooking the duck, pausing now and then to attend to my bonfire-in-a-pot outside. Pol led the solstice service, despite being irreligious, because he'd just been to a celebration and could remember how the toasts worked. I toasted the sun, and Pol toasted the sun, and Random toasted the sun. The pot looked pretty good - a black iron cauldron on a white snowy wall, carrying warm yellow flames into the cold blue dusk, spreading wood smoke and sweet fumes of burnt mead and rosemary.

So I had a big roast duck dinner, with Random, then a buffet with Simon and ChrisC, Random, Pol and ppx. I hadn't met ppx before. She turned out to be lovely, although I think slightly overwhelmed.

I went with Pol to drop ppx off after the evening and defrosted in a hot bath before going to sleep at about 2am. I have woken up hungover but happy.

Thank you, Pol, Random, Simon, ChrisC and ppx for making winter solstice 2009 a special day.

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