Sunday, September 14

Long time gone..

Firstly, I thank you all for your kind wishes, & thoughts during the dog days.

I am feeling a lot better. We had 2 lovely warm days, & yesterday was downright summery, climbing to 31 degrees, & making us begin to think about summer clothes. OMG what the hell am I going to wear? I can't have really gained that much weight... can I?

I had a letter from my Dear Niece, with news of family. Also, sadly the passing of their lovely cat, Paddy.

Paddy was very old, & had been with my niece from the beginning of her marriage, & the eventual arrival of her 2 daughters. Paddy cat was really so much a part of the family. She took turns sleeping with the girls as they grew up.

Paddy had 6 toes instead of the usual 5, & she was a very dignified darling. In the end her 'father' had to take her to the vet's to be put to sleep. She had begun to just fall over, & had fallen of the couch. The vet was quite amazed at her age, & she had moved many times with her family. She was born a country cat, but became a city cat, while just a kitten.

My niece said 'Daddy' brought her home in the cage, so the girls could say their goodbyes. The younger daughter asked if she could take Paddy to school for Show & Tell. My niece said she could just imagine the teacher's horror!

She was made a very elegant coffin, & laid to rest in their, hopefully, peranant garden. RIP Paddy.


Recently I was looking for recipe ideas among my old battered books, one, given to me when I first got married, by my mother. It is a Collins recipe book, they were common in New Zealand. First aid tips. Pages of alternative measurements. Sections for various dishes. Meats, Savouries, Desserts etc.

The book is somewhat splattered in parts. New Husband learning to cook Afghans. Children learning to cook various dishes. Hurried Meggie splatters, making hasty teas.

There are wonderful memories of friends & family. Usually when I wrote a recipe in the book, I also named the person who gave me the recipe. Hence I have 'Sue's Sponge' 'Bob's Chicken Casserole', that sort of thing. Some recipes I have no memory of ever making! How extraordinary. Plus we found our tastes changed over the years & things I once made often, are little thought of now.

One old favourite is Golden Sausages. Gom still loves them, but I am not keen anymore- they give me indigestion. Our Daughter still loves them, though. I was given the recipe by a neighbour, when our children were small. We still keep in touch, & she still makes the recipe now & then too, for her grandchildren.

When I was a newlywed, there were plenty of cooking shows on TV. It seemed to be a 'Thing' of the era, in the 60s & 70s.

There was Alison Holst, who was a sensible 'downhome' cooking Mum, & her recipes were usually family friendly. She had an easy manner, & was very popular. I still have quite a few recipe leaflets, featuring her recipes.

Then there was Graham Kerr, who was more flamboyant, & he tried much more daring recipes. New Zealand was beginning to open up to more varied cuisine. Graham was such a success, and his lighthearted humour was very popular. He did move on from NZ, & became a star with his series "The Galloping Gourmet".

I am not sure where, in the timeline of it all, there came upon the TV scene anther cook, Des Britten. He was an amusing flamboyant cook, who owned a restaurant. He really shook up the nations taste buds, & organised a nationwide cooking competition, with people entering various sections, from all over the country. I have a copy of his cookbook to this day, & though I rarely use it, I still enjoy looking through the recipes & reading his tips, he usually added at the end of each recipe.

I do believe Des 'got God' & became a minister of some religion.

I sometimes watch another exKiwi, cooking show host, Iain Hewitson, who is on TV here in Australia. He sometimes mentions Des, & being a contemporary of his. I don't remember Iain cooking on TV in NZ.

Another really flamboyant & highly humourous couple, was Hudson & Halls. I was surprised to find a documentary about the couple has been made for NZTV.

They were a male gay couple who were very entertaining. I was surprised to learn they are both now dead.

I know that not everybody enjoys watching cooking shows, nor even likes to cook. It is something I really enjoy, when I am in the mood, but now I also love to dine out when I get the chance. So nice not to have to do the dishes or think of the plan!

Bryan Adams, Summer of '69.


Kellie said...

Is it possible ... can I be first???? YAY! I am pleased you are feeling better but still very sad about poor Paddy! I adore our cat and would be lost without her!
I smelt the first scent of Jasmine yesterday! Hooray!

Molly said...

Meggie---please tell me that you don't eat Afgan hounds in Australia.....??

Rosie said...

I remember the galloping gourmet (I prescribe chocolate for depression , by the way but it looks like you dont need any now!)

Anonymous said...

The passing of a family pet is always so hard on the heart. In more cheery lines, I share the feeling of summer - and of clothing. I do prefer the warmth to the cold.

meggie said...

Kellie, the Jasmine is thick around here. Could be why I am sneezing so much! It is the neighbour's.

Molly, Afghans are wonderful chocolate biscuits- cookies- with cornflakes in them! Our kids loved them, as did Gom!

Rosie, I am not mad about chocolate. I do like a little now & then, but I suspect nuts are more my 'cheerup'.

Shirley, I actually hate physical exercise as such, but used to love walking... before the knee died! I prefer Autumn weather to any other.

Mike said...

So glad you are feeling better. My sincere condolences to your niece over the loss of the family cat. We had a cat that lived for almost 21 years. It was so hard to lose her but we had to have her put down eventually. It is so hard to do because they are so much like family members.

I used to love Graham Kerr's cooking show back before he had his heart problems. I think he was in the bag most of the time and he just looked like he was having so much fun.

Pauline said...

So glad to see the blues have lifted. I haven't watched TV in years and so have missed all the good stuff along with the bad. I've watched one cooking show at a friend's house - rachel ray, I believe, but prefer my mother's handwritten cookbook and old favorites to newer spicier foods.

Your summer is on the rise, ours in on the wane. I will miss the lovely warmth and my flower and vegetable gardens, though most of the summer bounty is now put by in jars and in the freezer. Only the potatoes left to dig and then the wait until October to put the plots to bed...

~Bren~ said...

So glad you are feeling better. Weather certainly makes all the difference. It has been raining here for 3 days! NO sun. We have had 9+ inches of rain. The flooding is awful. Not to mention the humidity. My cloth seats in the van were damp and the steering wheel was sweating. Now windows were open and it was in the garage. I am beginning to feel a little "blue." Tomorrow we begin a week of cool sunshine!

meggie said...

Mike, Yes it was well known that Graham Kerr, & Treena his wife, hit the old grog along. I think their children did 'tell-all' books. He was great fun to watch though.

Pauline, I so wish we had a produce garden. Our backyard is very small, & well... you know about the garden vandal. It is all I can do to keep some herbs.

Hi Bren, It never rains but it pours! Humid is the worst kind of weather there is!

Isabelle said...

Glad you're feeling better. Sad about Paddy - he looks a lot like our Sirius.

ancient one said...

Glad you are feeling better too.

Sorry about the cat. I have a granddaughter who is very allergic to cats. We all attended the bridesmaid's luncheon given by a friend on Saturday. Her cat made an appearance. My granddaughter and her aunt both suffered the rest of the afternoon. Neither of them touched the cat. Isn't it strange how some people just can't be around animals?

Those chocolate cookies sound so good! I really love chocolate!

Jo said...

Omigosh, I remember Graham Kerr, the Galloping Gourmet. His show was wonderful, and he was a hoot!

Sorry to hear about Paddy. My daughter's cat Mrs. Jiggs lived to be 22 years old, and finally she had to be put down too. It's a huge loss, isn't it?

I hope you are well...!