Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Hoping I’m half as clever as my grandma

I’ll try to get some walking into this by the end, but I’m going to start with my grandma.

My grandparents were wonderful and lived most of their lives, and mine, in Suffolk, although they ended up in Lincolnshire, poor souls. When mum and I used to stay with them in the summer holidays, (I was the much youngest of three, the other two mostly didn’t come with us) grandma and granddad lived in a village called Snape, near Aldeburgh, on the Suffolk coast.

We walked along the beach at Aldeburgh, up the Town Steps, down Crag Path, visited the Book Shop and the Wine Shop, (which I think has gone). We visited Snape Maltings, walked at Foxes Corner and along part of the Sailors Path at Iken Cliff where my great uncle Cecil used to live at Jumbo’s Cottage. (That’s what he was called, Jumbo, and he taught people to sail at Slaughdon.) We had ‘bbqs’ with their friends, Renee and Charlie at Tunstall Forest. We had wonderful times, can you tell?

Grandma cooked, you know, proper cooking. Steak pie, chocolate eclairs, bramble jelly, the freshly baked biscuits in the saucer of a cup of tea in bed (me, not the tea…) more than compensated for it being barely 6.30 in the morning. They grew potatoes, runner beans and strawberries in the garden.

But how did grandma know I was going to cook too? When they moved into their sheltered flat, grandma gave me her well used and much loved preserving pan, saying “You’re most likely to use it…” and yet, I don’t remember having shown much promise in the kitchen at that point, let alone any signs that I was going to be a wife and mother (of four. Careless.) and until now has only been used to soak a ham joint that was too big to fit in anything else, but, here I am today, using the preserving pan to make Seville Orange Marmalade.

First time I’ve made a marmalade or jam, although I’ve had a foray into preserving before. I made Green Tomato Chutney in the autumn. We’d grown tomatoes for the first time and, not surprisingly, they all came at once. Still have several jars lurking in the cupboard. Ho hum.

I did mention walking, if you were paying attention to my drivel, but I have been walking. I totted up 16 miles last week, which is plenty after barely setting foot outside on the ice for four weeks. I walked yesterday, about 5.5 miles with Lyn and Louise. Angela came too, but she’s hopping with crutches at the moment* so didn’t do the full distance. Oddly, she found the ice a bit tricky. We still have ice. my Kahtoolas are my new best friends and I’m not smug! In places the ice was so thick that even in these tropical temperatures of just above freezing, without the aid of sunlight, it’s not thawing that quickly. Saturday’s girly walk is under threat, with all this ice, deep snow just inland and our leader hopping, I’m not sure we’re going to make it. Again.

*There has been a little gentle digging at Angela going on. She strained a tendon in her knee sledging on Christmas Day, at her age! Silly girl. Poor girl’s finding it really frustrating now though as she is usually so busy and active (I think she’s ADHD myself…) and she’s having to be really careful and not try to rush her recovery. I persuaded her off the ice at one point yesterday, she’d hopped much further than we thought sensible and had been offered a lift. She took it and I think she was glad!


Alan Sloman said...

Sounds to me like your Granny was right. Tomato Chutney - yum!

Are you aware that the standby list is moving along - about 11 places so far according to Andy Howell - What number were you again?

Louise said...

Hmm. Popped along to Andy's blog last night and then sent David a text, (he's on night shift poor thing) that there's been a change. We were 60/61, so I guess that's 49/50 now. Maybe I'll cross my fingers and everything else after all! Filling in the route sheet as we blog, just in case.

Mind you, makes that extra stone a little more vital to shift. Just imagine how much all those extra stones must add up to? We can't be the only ones can we? Ooops.

word: ticornat...

Louise said...

(Um, don't say 'granny' too loudly. She hated it, grannies are little old ladies bent over a walking stick with a shawl and glasses on the end of their nose. Grandma was very definitely, Grandma!)

Anonymous said...

"I was the much youngest of three" - caught the others up now then have you? :-)

Louise said...

Good point, smarty pants!

Emily Harrison said...

Hi Louise

Could you give me call or email urgently please? I found your details through doing some research to try to save Jumbo's Cottage from being demolished (I assume you know about the proposed developement?). We could really do with your help in trying to save it.

Emily (emily@sopersfarm.com, 07748983676)