Tuesday, January 1, 2008
A good New Year
My new year's eve celebrations were very quiet, as they usually are. I don't want to be out on the roads with all the drunks about so I stay safely at home. Sounds boring, I know, but it suits my rather reclusive lifestyle.
Anne came over at 7pm and I prepared my version of an antipasto for our dinner -- a version that would have raised eyebrows in Italy. I put in it giardiniera (of course), pickled cucumbers, cocktail onions, feta, stuffed olives, fresh tomato, chopped ham and chopped roast pork. The chopped roast pork went remarkably well with the other ingredients. And instead of using the antipasto as a prelude to pasta, we just had the antipasto with toast. Very eccentric!
For drinkies I opened a bottle of Veuve Cliquot (non-vintage). I tried a bottle of vintage Veuve Cliquot recently and it was off. French wines do go off rather a lot I am afraid. But the non-vintage version does not stay in the bottle for very long so is a better bet for being OK. Veuve Cliquot (non-vintage) is in fact my favourite champers but an Australian version called Seaview Brut is nearly as good in my opinion and costs just one tenth of the price so I usually buy Seaview. I can afford to drink anything I like but that old Presbyterian "Waste not, want not" gospel is too deep in my bones for me to disregard it often.
After dinner we spent most of the time listening to Scottish music -- as the Scots really know how to celebrate new year. One of the things we put on was a tape of "Andy Stewart's Hogmanay" -- as I do most years. And as lots of people once did. It's probably a bit sad to be listening to a tape of someone else's party instead of having one yourself but it felt fine nonetheless. And the sentimental Scottish songs were great. I even got out my Glengarry (Scottish cap) and wore it for most of the evening. A token gesture is better than no gesture, maybe.
And for breakfast this morning Anne cooked us another international meal: Porridge followed by croissants. I always enjoy a bit of porridge and it was of course the Scottish connection again.
An amusing story about porridge: It is of course prison food in Britain but recently one prison tried to replace it with some sort of prepackaged meals -- only to have the inmates line up at the prison shop to buy oats with their own money so that they could make their own porridge! It sounds like an urban myth but I understand it completely