Thursday 10 November 2011


    A visit to the bar, the first in a while, brings me back home, via the French side-roads, safely before midnight.  The fire is still blazing and the dogs have been happy in my absence, although they are tumultuous about my unusual late my return.  I had my dinner before I left, a good few hours ago. It was a tasty stuffed red pepper, as I recall. Stuffed with what, I can’t remember, but at the time it was not only substantial, but delicious. Albeit, far too much for one person.
    Wendy is away this week, doing stuff that Wendy does. She is so brilliant at her job that, nowadays, it seamlessly fits into our routine, allowing her, and us, the freedom of a foreign country rural lifestyle. Although I used to be in the same trade, it berates me now that sometimes, often in fact, I forget what it is she actually does do. All I know is that she does it very well, and I bless her for that.
   This year has been the longest, hottest, statistically memorable summer on record. And it hasn’t really ended yet, as we near mid November.
    I love summer but, when it comes to November, I somehow look forward to frost and soup. Frost culls things, on behalf of nature, and a good one saves us gardeners a lot of hardship, as long as we are prepared and ready for it.
    Soup, on the other hand, has even more purpose. Soup has a function for all but the most sheltered of the human race. Soup has a deep history, soup has warmth, soup…..has soul.  Without soup, the world would be a poorer place.
    But what is in a soup? Does it matter? Is it important, and is soup contained by its contents?  No!
Left-overs, that’s what it is. My Granny, and maybe your Granny, made most of her meals out of left-overs. Way back then, it was an art to use every part of everything edible. To throw away things was a social crime. Ladies of substantial merit were vigilant in how they made sure that nothing, but nothing, was wasted. And thus, soup as we know it.
    It’s boiling now, I can smell it, even before I can hear it.
    Pepper, courgettes, carrot, bacon, black radish, onion and potato. These things are all in my pot, and part, but not all, of what soup should be. For there is no recipe, just ingredients. Chuck it in, that is what the pot is calling out for. Soup makes its own flavour, so it does.
    I probably wont eat/drink much soup tonight…but something in my make-up made me want vegetable soup before I went to bed.
Be careful what you wish for, eh? It could be snowing tomorrow.

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