Sunday, 31 October 2010

Sunday Dinner

Today I needed to take myself out. Trouble was, after I read for a while, drank a cup of coffee, and looked at the clock, it was 2:00 pm. The shops close at 4:00 pm on Sunday and I really wanted to do a search of antique shops to replace the beautiful green tumbler I broke yesterday. This isn’t just any tumbler; this is probably 1930s depression glass, which is now very expensive. I noticed there are two left in the cupboard, so someone else broke the other one probably, but still, I need to replace it. I feel quite sick about it. I was draining nugget potatoes and one dropped out of the pot, right into the glass and smashed it. I know, what was the glass doing in the sink when I was draining potatoes?

I jumped on my bike, despite drizzly rain, and headed off across the foot path and over the river towards the cathedral. The trip doesn’t take more than fifteen minutes, but by the time I got there, the antique shop I had in mind was closed anyway. By now it was seriously raining and windy and I noticed a little pub called “Take 5,” which isn’t a very pub-sounding name, but I thought it looked cozy. The sign out front said they did a Sunday roast, which was exactly what I was hankering after. But the sign also said they were serving from 12 noon – 3:00 pm. I waffled, then locked up my bike and went in. I asked if there was any chance I could get the meal and she said she’d check, which she did, coming back and saying yes. I was so relieved. I really felt the need to feed myself well today. Last night I had the last of the soup, and it was definitely past its prime.  

The pub was cozy, with a fire blazing in the hearth. It probably dates back to the 1800s and it’s right across the street from the arch into Norwich Cathdral, which of course dates back to the 11th century. I ordered a glass of white wine, having decided on the roast pork with turnip mash and parsnips, roasted potatoes, and apple sauce. Just like I would have made at home on a blustery Sunday afternoon. It was unbelievably good, and I realized it was the first excellent meal, aside from Chris and Mary Laxton’s roast chicken dinner when I first got here and Pip’s roast pheasant of two weeks’ ago. It was time to spoil myself. I even went all out and had the homemade lemon sorbet, which was excellent, followed by peppermint tea. I’ll definitely go back there when I feel the need for more comfort.

So back at the flat, just as the light is dying, and back to the books. I have to write a short essay arguing the case for or against writing about a contentious issue. We were supposed to have read “A Very English Hangman – The Life and Times of Albert Pierrepoint ,” the last hangman in Britain, but the library copy was loaned out, and I certainly wasn’t going to pay good money to buy it. It sounds like a dismal story, which of course is why we’re being asked to write an essay about writing about people like Albert Pierrepoint. It makes me wonder who will end up writing a biography on Willy Picton. What kind of a psychological disposition would you have to have to delve into that story? And who would want to read the details about the horrific demise of all those poor women. I know it’s part of human nature, the good and the evil, but I choose not to delve into the dark side of life. Reading a biography like that would affect me for weeks. I remember years ago (1980?) going to see “The Elephant Man” with Marc, and every time I thought of it over the following few days, I cried. It’s hard to be reminded of man’s inhumanity to man (more politically correct: humans’ inhumanity to humans). It’s nightmare material.

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