Sunday, June 18, 2006

Stress in extremis

This weekend has been punctuated by two bouts of severe stress on either side of 24 hours of fun entertaining and pleasantly relaxing recovery.

I sent my eldest off like a lamb to the slaughter to spend the weekend with his dad, grilling and maths problem-solving ahead, insistence on his being top of the class and fatherly guilt feeding his ambitious aggressiveness. Result: high stress levels and necessity for calming read to rid the mind of toxins. (Reading right now: The Night Music by Christopher Campbell-Howes)

Followed by... a jolly evening around English cheese and French wine, with, in the starring role: Caerphilly, Cheddar, Wenslydale, Stilton, Red Leicester, Double Gloucester set on Tuc biscuits and bran toasts, with, in supporting role: crudites dipped into Tzaziki (made exquisitely though I do say so myself, by yours truly), nibbles, and introducing tuna rillettes made by new guest D.

My friends brought some marvellous wine, the evening was balmy, we sat outside and picked, buffet-style at the goodies on the table. Casual, cosy, intimate and tasty, with riotous chat, wit, and repartee. Just how I love to spend an evening.

I'm not sure if anyone made it to the festival des fanfares in Montpellier, or if they did, whether it was still on gone 1am.

Today, a lazy morning was ruined by my tax declaration online. Lots of running up and down stairs looking for bits of paper, previous tax declarations, and the euro conversion rate. Near heart attack at tax estimation followed by much-needed sustenance finishing up the wine bottles during lunch. Otherwise it would have been a two-G&T-day.

Now awaiting Return of the Sons and hope that, being Father's Day, the essential component was concentrated enjoyment at being with daddy.

Update: big relief - it was.


  1. Caerphilly, Cheddar, Wensleydale...and STILTON? Oh, what have I missed?

  2. Yeah, still got some Stilton over too...

  3. Really sorry I missed it. Cheese does freeze, you know.

  4. Sarah howz about a post on understanding different kinds of cheese. I am just getting into cheese and I really don't know what to look out for..


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