Saturday, November 13, 2004

Slicing Vegetables and Power Outages

Power outages bring back memories
· Anderson Hall seemed to survive the 6 PM to 5 AM power outage without difficulty. It was a bit like living in a developing country, except that the hall and lounge lights continued to burn and we had water. When I was living in Sri Lanka, one fall (2002) we had 12 hours of outages each day – in six hour blocs. They were not announced in advance. For those who did not have generators, the principal light was from artificial fluorescent ‘wands’ which we charged up whenever the power came on. None of the houses had screens, of course, and these lights seemed particularly attractive to the night bugs that proliferate in tropical climates. There would be hundreds of them sitting on the wands and buzzing around – and a goodly number of corpses to be swept on the floor in the morning. The activity of choice during outages, for those who could afford it was dinner at a generator equipped restaurant. There was a very good and modestly priced Chinese one a short walk from my home, the Flower Song, which I frequented regularly. Since there wore no street lights, one did need to be cautious not to break an ankle in a sidewalk hole, which could be both wide and a foot or more deep.

Slicing vegetables
· Tomorrow’s North Africa meal uses a mix of vegetables almost completely different than the Italian, Spanish, French and South Asian meals that I more customarily cook. There are turnips, onions, eggplant (which is used in South Asia ) and several different kinds of squash (North Africans use a squash like vegetable called calebeza. ) This meant almost two hours of vegetable peeling and slicing. The Tenleytown Whole Foods market had about eight different kinds of squash and some wonderful looking New Zealand Lamb as well. There is nothing like Whole Foods if you are doing some off the beaten track cooking, especially with vegetables. Having a ‘neighborhood market’ like this is one advantage of living in a cosmopolitan city. I get to have the best of both worlds, of course.

Thanksgiving plans
· Some families make holiday plans well in advance, but we are more last minute types. I called my father this evening – he is a vigorous 93 - and we made plans for me to come and pick him up from his assisted living apartment and drive with him down to Virginia. He still drives – quite well in fact – but has accepted the idea that a long drive over unfamiliar terrain in hliday traffic is not a great idea. Some day, many years hence, most of my student friends and neighbors will have to cope with your parents aging process including, driving, possibly nursing home care ultimately, the death of these personalities who have loomed so large in our lives. If your parents are as responsible about this as mine have been, you will be blessed.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have you ever seen Asparagus this BIG
They grow up to 15in long and 2in wide.
how to grow asparagus

2:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vegetables are great, but the Heart Start Defibrillator is better (At saving your life, that is ;) ).

10:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That sounds great, but I've seen very different opinions of portable aed

5:09 PM  

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