A Little Christmas Carol for Natasha_04_The Story of Two (i)

The Story of Two (i)

Düsseldorf, Tuesday, 12.10.1999, 10:02 pm

I have already been thinking of making some sweets out of the 202 chestnuts we picked up from the park last Sunday, but it was Eric, my French ‘son’, who gave me the last push last night. He was telling me how expensive these glazed chestnuts were and how they would melt in one’s mouth…

It is a big challenge to make glazed chestnuts, according to Eric. The reason why these whole chestnuts are so expensive is that chestnuts break very easily. But it is not to show myself I could do it that made me want to try out the recipe which I had found in an old cookbook. It was more that I would like Eric and, above all, Otmar (my now ex) to savour this specialty made from self-picked chestnuts.

I spent half an hour snipping the tip off the chestnuts and five hours peeling them. I even skipped lunch. I simply swallowed one of those big apples brought by Andreas before I dashed off to teach Toshie at four.

A handful of chestnuts had landed in Eric’s oven but it was still a long and complicated process peeling the rest of them. The problem is that they have to be peeled hot. After two hours trial and error, I found out the most efficient way. When I finished, my finger tips looked as if they had big blisters but I did a neat job.

The process I devised ran like this:

Two saucepans of water boiling on the hotplates.
Put chestnut A into the first saucepan, after a while chestnut B.
After one or two minutes, when A is hot and the shell no longer hard, take it out.
Put chestnut C into the same saucepan where B was and move B to position A.
Take off the shell of A and put into the second saucepan.

Now B is ready. Take it out.
Put chestnut D into the first saucepan, move C to the ‘front’.
Take off the shell of B and put into the second saucepan.
Meanwhile A is ready for peeling. Take it out of the second saucepan.
Peel A.

Now C is ready. Take it out.
Put chestnut E into the first saucepan, move D to the ‘front’.
Take off the shell of C and put into the second saucepan.
Meanwhile B is ready for peeling. Take it out of the second saucepan.
Peel B.

Now D is ready. Take it out.
Put chestnut F into the first saucepan, move E to the ‘front’.
Take off the shell of D and put into the second saucepan.
Meanwhile C is reading for peeling. Take it out of the second saucepan.
Peel C.

I have always thought that chestnuts were more or less smooth as their shells. I never knew they kind of look like walnuts when they are without their peel. And so many different shapes in their half roundness, so many crevices.

I had to think of what Eric said about the non-existence of uniqueness in people and things. I wish I could show him all the peeled chestnuts.

2017.12.12 A Little Christmas Carol for Natasha_04_The Story of Two
(To be cont’d)

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FM:)

So Cold

Jess M Rodriguez shared Richard Middleton’s post. Yesterday at 03:49 ·

 

No automatic alt text available.

Richard Middleton I spit my drink out! 😂😂😂😂😂

Fanny-Min Becker Good that I wasn’t drinking anything. 🙂

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FM:)

These Days

2017.12.11_Black is White

這年頭

分不清  黑黑白白
看不到  是是非非

沒有白 只有黑
沒有是 只有非

非 + 非 = 是
白 – 白 = 黑

黑與白 是與非 誰會裡

×××××××××××××××××
FM:)

There is a Crack in Everything

Anthem

The birds they sang
At the break of day
Start again
I heard them say
Don’t dwell on what
Has passed away
Or what is yet to be
Yeah the wars they will
Be fought again
The holy dove
She will be caught again
Bought and sold
And bought again
The dove is never free

Ring the bells (ring the bells) that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything (there is a crack in everything)
That’s how the light gets in
We asked for signs
The signs were sent
The birth betrayed
The marriage spent
Yeah the widowhood
Of every government
Signs for all to see
I can’t run no more
With that lawless crowd
While the killers in high places
Say their prayers out loud
But they’ve summoned, they’ve summoned up
A thundercloud
And they’re going to hear from me
Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything (there is a crack in everything)
That’s how the light gets in
You can add up the parts
You won’t have the sum
You can strike up the march
There is no drum
Every heart, every heart to love will come
But like a refugee
Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything (there is a crack in everything)
That’s how the light gets in
Ring the bells that still can ring (ring the bells that still can ring)
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything (there is a crack in everything)
That’s how the light gets in
That’s how the light gets in
That’s how the light gets in
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Songwriters: Leonard Cohen
Anthem lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

 

Revelation _ by Joy Olivia Yourcenar

Miles Chandler is with Joy Yourcenar and 3 others.

23 April 2016 · 

Revelation

In the end,
you fall like a ripe plum,
split and peeled at the last moment,
ripeness before corruption.
You drop,
flesh and pit, under a dark-seamed midnight
riven by the desire
of your hastily invoked archangels.

The wings of Azrael brush your lips,
your face,
limn your downcast lashes in reflected radiance,
erasing a multiplicity of past mistakes,
until you contain the infinite fertility
of a blank page.

Then know:
you will implode, bruised
by the blare of receding trumpets,
surrounded by limpid-eyed saints
professing reservations,
you will find,
concealed inside your peeled rind,
the new pit,
paradise regrown,
splitting open its seed coat
and pushing you up
into the serpent’s mouth,
into the new beginning.

-By Joy Olivia Yourcenar (1999).

Image may contain: 1 person, close-up

Remembering Joy, with fond memories
It’s again her birthday

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FM:)
♥♥

A Little Christmas Carol for Natasha_02_ Holes

2017.12.03 Holes

Holes 

If it had not been for this apple pie which Otmar baked, I would have forgotten that these holes existed in my mind.

Such a thick top he put on the apple pie that it was possible for the fork to poke in deep holes…

And such deep holes I once looked at with big eyes when I was small. Deep holes on tea biscuits. I used to look for holes which would go through. I think I never found any…

Tea biscuits. Special tea biscuits which we bought from a factory where an aunt of ours was working. Mother used to take us there. It was a rare treat for us because we could take the ferry to cross the Harbour– in those days there was no Cross-Harbour Tunnel. It was always a day trip.

The tea biscuits were special because they were the left-overs from the packaging department. They were broken tea biscuits. It was shortly after the War, and, believe it or not, in those days, one could buy broken biscuits. In any case, they were the only kind we could afford then.

I remember half tea biscuits which we would kind of hate; I remember bigger than half biscuits which we would consider acceptable; I remember considering biscuits with just one corner broken to be priceless. Above all, I remember with fond memory finding those almost-impossible-to-find biscuits with only one tiny tip of a corner missing!

And I would be running my fingers over my ‘perfect’ tea biscuit, feeling its deep holes…

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Düsseldorf, 1999.12.15
Re-published, in response to Storyhucker Stuart M. Perkins
Hong Kong, 2017.12.03
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FM:)
♥♥