We celebrated Thanksgiving on a Friday this year, because I had a video gaming dinner to attend on Thursday. This was particularly fortuitous, as it allowed time for a jammy contribution to arrive from Mrs. Mutterer of Mutterings from the Moor.
I woke early to the postman knocking in some complicated rhythm that I can no longer remember (but fortunately not the rhythm that the junkies in the neighborhood use… Can’t anyone in this place just bloody knock?). He delivered a package red striped on the outside, gold on the inside, and jammy in the center.
It was a delightful start to the day, which I followed up by opening a bank account. To my shock and horror, they are charging me 7 quid a month for this pleasure. However, I didn’ t know better (I assumed all checking accounts here cost money–it seems like this country is delighted by any prospect to squeeze money out of people) so I just went with it.
The rest of the day was whiled away shopping and cooking. I encountered a boy with glorious hair on the bus–long, long brown hair, framing his face like a halo in the light. I told him so and he looked at me like I was barking mad.
For dinner, I made (in this order) pecan praline cheesecake, stuffing (not stuffed in anything so it perhaps should be called dressing), a roasted vegetable and rice salad for the gluten free/dairy free folk, mashed potatoes (lots, as Bader requested), and a pear cranberry dessert (also for the gluten free/dairy free folk). I’ll post the “recipes” and processes in another post, but I figured I wouldn’t bore everyone who doesn’t care about food with those details. I will say that everything turned out just astoundingly successful. At first I thought the stuffing was somewhat squishy, but as it cooled it set up a bit and really became a wonderful texture. I don’t think I have ever made that many dishes at once without at least two of them being closer to a miss than a hit. Either I am actually improving in my cooking skills (a possibility), or I have used up all of my cooking karma for an age and a half (much more likely).
And I finished with plenty of time to shower and dress for dinner. I wore a black lacy number, the only dress I brought with me from the States. (Sadly I left my delightful red satin formal at home–I couldn’t see when I would possibly have call to wear it. In hindsight… I wore it to class back home, so that was somewhat silly of me.) Blue cowboy boots, which serve as my only dress shoes here completed the look.
A note on these boots: every time I wear them, people rave about them. If you have small enough feet, you can still get them on Ebay. If you are looking for an American size 8 (like I wear), you’re somewhat out of luck. I bought three pairs–one I wear now, one to wear when this pair wears out, and one pair to wear on my wedding day, on the off chance that I ever actually get married.
The event was held at Cora’s apartment, west on Constitution St. and down Constitution Road hill a bit. Her apartment is lovely and large, but even then we had to push the furniture in the living room against the walls. Hazel, Kate’s lovely sister, gave me a lift so I could get the stupid quantity of food I made down the hill.
Ilya helped carry things up the stairs, where we were warmly welcomed with white wine.
The rest of the evening is as well told in photos. It involved a lot of food (all emphatically declared delicious by everyone in attendance) and a lot of talking. I told stories. Highly inappropriate stories, I’m sure, and as soon as I would launch into one the room would go silent. This happened three or four times throughout the evening. Ilya instructed me in the way of rumba, which was delightful…until a former lady-friend of his waltzed in the door and I was dropped as quickly as humanly possible. Oh, the hilarity.