Well, it's been a pretty good day so far, one way and another.
First of all, I'm feeling better today after a few horrid days all full of cold and the yuck that comes with it. The cough is still quite dramatic but in myself I'm much better.
I did my weekly shop this morning, hitting Mr Sainsbury's store near Taunton. While I was there I suddenly felt the urge to buy the ingredients for my favourite chutney. It's a recipe I found a few months ago in the online edition of the Wanaka Sun newspaper. So, I bought the appropriate amounts of kiwifruit, bananas, spices, dried mango, white wine vinegar and other bits and pieces. Once back home, with the cat fed and a few other jobs jobbed, I got down to the chopping.
Please click on it to see a bigger version that you might actually be able to read.
I actually don't really like vine fruit in chutneys, so I substitute the sultanas with chopped dried mango (yum).
I think I may have overdone the ginger a little bit, it seemed quite 'powerful' when I was bottling up, but it will probably mellow a touch with keeping. That is assuming I can manage to keep it long enough!
One other point is that I find it is better to cook it for longer than the hour the recipe suggests; one and a half hours is usually what it takes for it to get to the right gloopy consistency.
Then came the rugby. I support Scotland, it's an ancestry thing where my conscience could never allow me to support the country of my birth in this particular sport, who were playing Italy at Murrayfield. Italy came out fairly easy winners in the end, taking their first ever away victory in the competition and they deserved it too. Come on Scotland, get it together.
Then the attention turned to Croke Park in Dublin, where Ireland played somewhat uncomfortable hosts to England. Croke Park is where traditional Irish sports are played and it is only this year that rugby has been played there for the first time. The discomfort comes from the fact that this very arena was the scene of a massacre perpetrated by the British Army in 1920, and now here it was having the dirge that is the British national anthem being played there. It must have been very uncomfortable for many people but the world has to turn and move on. Anyway, Ireland destroyed any perceived stabiliy that English rugby may have found in the past few, shaky weeks and came out winners by a record breaking margin with me cheering them on.
As I write this Wales are playing France in Paris and, to be honest, I don't expect an upset.
Tomorrow I'm going to get out and about, no matter what the weather and take some arty, greetings card type photos at Kilve.
Also tomorrow is the birthday of two friends of mine. The first is my friend Si, who I have known since my very first day at secondary school at the age of eleven, and the second is Philippe, Rebekka's boyfriend in Switzerland. Happy birthday both of you.
Now I'm going to settle down to watching France score more points than I would like, feed the cat (again) and settle into bed with a book for my idea of a pretty good night in. The book, by the way, is a really interesting one, lent to me by my work colleague Nicola. It's called 'The handsomest man in Cuba' by Lynette Chiang and is about the author's adventures cycling around Cuba on a serious budget. It's great fun and has me far more enthralled than I expected it to. Of course it's not as good as my book but, well, what else would you expect?
Night night, dear readership.