July 19, 2000

Pies & Chickens & Rust



Here are a few of my favorite online haunts:
[This is the site I visit to fantasize about living in Toronto again, which is almost every single day during the winter]

Jonathan Cainer's Zodiac Forecasts
[This is where I visit in the morning, when I need a positive spin on things past, present and future.]

Living Local
[This is where I go to see what Canadians are up to, sometimes I even buy things from the businesses listed there.]

Environment Canada Weather
[This is the site I visit every morning, and before every road trip during the winter]

The weather turned cool yesterday and has remained so today. I am wearing a sweater!

Attila brought home a pint of freshly picked blackberries on Monday night. I promised him a pie and a pie he got. I discovered one day, while eating an apple in the garden, that blackberries taste very good if eaten with a mouthful of sweet apple. Based on the discovery I baked an Appleberry pie, made from apples and the blackberries supplied by Attila. "The Teenager" did not like the combination but it got a thumbs-up from Attila and me.

Yesterday our friendly organic farmer dropped by with a dozen eggs and two small stewing chickens. One of the chickens went directly into the freezer, the other into the crockpot. Late this morning I removed the chicken from the broth and the meat from the bones. The broth now sits chilling in the refrigerator, so that the fat can be easily removed. I will use these ingredients to make a chicken stew with dumplings on Friday.

I have been busy today working on my travel trailer. The rounded steel sections of the exterior have rusted. I have been sanding and cleaning, then taping and painting. The process is slow but the results well worth the effort. I imagine it will take the rest of the summer to sand and paint the rest of the steel sections. I plan to work on it a bit each day that it does not rain.

The "No Soliciting" sign I placed on my door seems to be effective. I have only had two strangers knocking on the door since it was posted. One was the Water Meter Reader who I admitted cheerfully to carry out his task. The other was an enterprising young man who saw the sign and immediately walked back to the front of the house to knock on the front door. The front door has no sign. I came to the door and smiled, looked at his product, stated my lack of interest, ignored his heartbroken expression, and went back to the kitchen to continue baking my pie.

The book I am reading right now is 1349 pages long; the print is small. I am progressing slowly and contentedly. The story is about an extended family of the affluent class in India during the 1950s. It is easy to feel relaxed while reading about the ups-and-downs of the comfortable lives that the characters lead.

I was digging out the rubble from under our bed, where Attila likes to hide books that he has been reading. It seemed a coincidence that I came across the volume "Mother India" written by Katherine Mayo and published in 1927. I attained it years ago at a yard sale. The book is a description of observed day-to-day life of common individuals in India. It does not describe the privileged classes. Ms. Mayo writes:

"It would be a great pleasure to thank, by name, the many persons, both Indian and English, who have so courteously facilitated my access to information...
But the facts that it was impossible to forecast the conclusions I should reach, and that for these conclusions they are in no way responsible, make it improper to embarrass them now by connecting them personally therewith. For this reason the manuscript of this book has not been submitted to any member of the Government of India, nor to any Briton or Indian connected with official life. It has, however, been reviewed by certain public health authorities of international eminence who are familiar with the Indian field."

The periods of which the books were written are quite different. The first, "Mother India" describes the daily lives of common people under Colonial Rule. The second, "A Suitable Boy" tells the story of affluent people under Home Rule, approximately 25 years later. I find it interesting that "A Suitable Boy" does include graphic descriptions of the environment that indicate that the non-fictional descriptions in Ms. Mayo's book remained quite accurate.

I think that being a common person in Canada is something to be appreciated. And I do, I really do appreciate it. I think I will just go and have a piece of Appleberry pie right now, to remind myself how very lucky I am.

Top of Page

Worldly Distractions

The Travel Trailer
The Travel Trailer

By the Easy Chair
A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth

Page by Page: A Woman's Journal
by Maggie Turner

Canadian Maggie Turner writes and publishes poetry, photography, and a personal journal online. Her work reflects the current way of life in Canada, embracing Canada's past, present, and future in a unique portrayal of everyday life. Maggie's voice is one of the many that actively depict the rich diversity of Canadian culture.

Photography: "a term which comes from the Greek words photos (light) and graphos (drawing). A photograph is made with a camera by exposing film to light in order to create a negative. The negative is then used in the darkroom to print a photograph (positive) onto light-sensitive paper.
Source: University of Arizona Glossary

Poetry: "a form of speech or writing that harmonizes the music of its language with its subject. To read a great poem is to bring out the perfect marriage of its sound and thought in a silent or voiced performance. At least from the time of Aristotle's Poetics, drama was conceived of as a species of poetry."
Source: Creative Studios

Journal: " "Though a journal may be many things - a treasury, a storehouse, a jewelry box, a laboratory, a drafting board, a collector's cabinet, a snapshot album, a history, a travelogue..., a letter to oneself - it has some definable characteristics. It is a record, an entry-book, kept regularly, though not necessarily daily.... Some (entries) will be nearly illegible, written in the dark in the middle of the night.... Not only is it a record for oneself, but of oneself. Every memorable journal, any successful journal, is honest. Nothing sham, phony, false...." (Dorothy Lambert from Ken Macrorie's book, Writing to be Read )
A journal is a way to keep track of your thoughts about what you read... as well as what you did on any given day."
Source: Journal Writing

A Blog is an online journal created by server side software, often hosted by a commercial interest.

"The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger[4] on 17 December 1997. The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase we blog in the sidebar of his blog in April or May 1999.[5][6][7] Shortly thereafter, Evan Williams at Pyra Labs used "blog" as both a noun and verb ("to blog," meaning "to edit one's weblog or to post to one's weblog") and devised the term "blogger" in connection with Pyra Labs' Blogger product, leading to the popularization of the terms."

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