Sunday, May 13, 2007

Mothers' Day

As I usually do on Mothers' Day, I took some goodies over to Jenny's place for lunch. It was a small occasion. Those present were only Jenny, our son Joe, myself and Nanna (Jenny's mother). I think Jenny was a bit disappointed that neither of her daughters came over. She did however go over to her son Paul's place later in the afternoon -- presumably for afternoon tea.

I bought some Kingaroy double cream brie for the feast which turned out to be particularly good and some double-smoked Champagne ham also went down well. Jenny provided Pavlova for dessert. Pavlova is a great Australian favourite and this one was one of the best.

I had a fairly long chat with my son Joe after lunch. We discussed his mathematics studies (he is now in 3rd year) and religion, among other things. I was pleased that he has decided to go straight through to his Ph.D. at UQ. I was however surprised that, at a very large university, he is one of only a handful of students who are concentrating exclusively on mathematics. Given that there is a need for mathematicians in all sorts of places, he should always be in demand.

I am still mildly surprised to have a mathematician for a son. Joe is eerily like me in all sorts of ways but mathematics was always my least favourite subject -- though I did teach statistics at university level at one stage.

Like me, Joe still has an interest in religion but his beliefs seem to be minimal. We mainly discussed church history.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Bagels and Lox

Anne recently spent three weeks on a vacation in the USA. She spent a week of it in NYC -- mainly visiting the art galleries and making one trip to the Met -- to see Turandot, I think.

Before she left, I told her she must try some Reuben sandwiches. I am a great fan of them but they are virtually unknown in Australia. I very foolishly however forgot to tell her to try bagels and lox ("lox" is the Yiddish form of the German "Lachs", meaning salmon -- smoked salmon in this case). Bagels and Lox is of course a great Jewish treat and where else would you try it if not in NYC?

So Anne missed out on a gastronomic experience, something she does not at all like doing. I therefore had to make up something here for her. I have got Reuben sandwiches pretty right. The key, as always, is good ingredients. So Anne tracked down some bagels she liked and I made up the bagels with lox and THICK soft Philly cream cheese for our evening meal tonight. It was of course wonderful but VERY fattening. Anne was amazed when I told her that some Jewish ladies have bagels and lox as simply a snack rather than as a main meal.

The bagels I have had in the USA always had salt on top but that is unknown here so we had bagels with Poppy seeds on top.

You see what an uneventful life I have when I think a sandwich is worth writing about! Uneventful is how I like it.

I also forgot to tell Anne about the soup Nazi but I don't plan to emulate him.