C I V I L    M A R R I A G E    I S    A    C I V I L    R I G H T.

A N D N O W I T ' S T H E L A W O F T H E L A N D.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

Sunday Drive: Listzt, Liebestraum

BTW, yesterday was the sixth anniversary of nationwide marriage equality.  My, how time flies.


Friday, June 25, 2021

Weekend Getaway: The Golden Arrow to Paris

From 1929 to 1972, the all-Pullman Golden Arrow was the first-class way to travel from London to Paris and back.  Here is a color film of the six-hour journey by train and ferry, shot in 1949 - wouldn't it be loverly to take that trip today?


Friday, June 18, 2021

The Pork Boys Do Spring

In recent weeks, we have celebrated my birthday and M.P.'s retirement from his retirement job, and just spring in general.  Here are some pics - click to enlarge.  

The first gladiola from our garden made a lovely centerpiece with a few tiny yellow mums.

Chilled cucumber soup and a bit of avocado toast on the side was just right for a springtime dinner.

At my request, for my birthday M.P. made Julia Child's coq au vin, served over rice, along with homemade croissants, fried eggplant, wilted spinach leaves and bacon, and gratin dauphinoise, a la Mme. Pepin (Jacque's maman).  That was damn good eatin', boys, I tell you what.

May was an uncommonly rainy month, so all our outdoor plants and the herb garden are doing very nicely indeed.  Here are some colorful kalanchoes and pansies by the kitchen steps.

Believe it or not, M.P. has grown this lemon tree from a single seed he planted several years ago.  No fruit yet, but it's over three feet tall now.

Gladiola and periwinkles from the garden are lovely in candlelight, along with some seashells from Florida.

One night, M.P. surprised me with a pair of luscious cheese souffles - a tricky bit of cookery he has been working on for years, and now has perfected, as you can see.

Believe me when I tell you that Philly steak sandwiches made on French bread with a spread of mashed avocado and ranch dressing are dee-licious.

M.P. deep-fried what he calls some golden nuggets made from Yukon Gold potatoes - scrumptious with a little Cajun seasoning sprinkled over them.

Plain old green beans sauteed with a bit of onion and tomato are very tasty too.

M.P. spent several days making this cardboard cut-out for the birthday party of one of his granddaughters - made for little girls to stand behind and have a "mermaid picture" taken - it was a big hit at the party.  M.P. showed off his fine artistic skills here - he painted all of this freehand, out of his imagination, no tracing or copying.

More glads, magenta and orange this time, with some sale-priced poseys from the grocery store.  Also check out the marble plates M.P. found - very chic, I think.  (I hate to admit they are not really marble, or even porcelain.)

One day while cleaning out the deep freeze, M.P. made the happy discovery of a long-forgotten duck sitting at the bottom of the box.  So he soon had it butterflied and roasted low and slow in wine and herbs - it came out so tender it was falling off the bone, and had a magnificent flavor.

Accompaniments included, right to left, duck gravy made from the drippings, lemon-butter rice, and carrots and peas in a wine and cream sauce.  So good.

M.P. made his wonderfully yummy Schoolhouse Rolls, too.

The piece de resistance was M.P.'s homemade coffee cheesecake, flavored with Kahlua, which marbled up beautifully as you can see.

A delightful end to a delightful meal.

And that's the way it goes for these two old shitkickers, now both retired and fancy free.  I hope all my truckbuddies are enjoying life and eating well too.


Sunday, June 13, 2021

Sunday Drive: Oh Me! Oh My!

Jump-start your Sunday with this hopping little tune from the 1950 film Tea for Two, sung and danced (!) by Gene NelsonThis you have to see, fellas


Saturday, June 12, 2021

Trooping the Colour, 2021

The Queen's official birthday was celebrated earlier today at Windsor Castle with the centuries-old ceremony of Trooping the Colour, the splendid epitome of British pageantry.  The BBC takes us there:

Bonus:  The Queen and other members of the Royal Family hosted the G7 leaders at a dinner yesterday at the Eden Project in rural Cornwall:

President Biden and the First Lady were there; it is remarkable to think that when Her Majesty's reign began in 1952, Harry Truman was in the White House - and Winston Churchill in 10 Downing Street.

As international conferences go, this one has been pretty sedate so far: no chairs have been thrown, and nobody has gotten punched out. Everyone was, thankfully, on their best behavior in the Queen's presence, though I notice that Justin I'm-too-sexy-for-my-shirt Trudeau just had to wear brown shoes to prove he is the King of Cool. Ah, well.


Sunday, June 6, 2021

Sunday Drive: Puccini, O Mio Babbino Caro

A favorite of ours:  the lovely aria from Gianni Schicchi, as performed in Munich by the late, great Montserrat Caballé in 1990:


Friday, June 4, 2021

Weekend Getaway: The Heart of England

Rick Steves takes us to Cambridge, Oxford, Blenheim Palace, Warwick Castle, and Ironbridge, where the Industrial Revolution started.


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