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Friday, 23 May 2008

no thanks, i'm full

Some of you labour under the misapprehension that I don’t like the dog. A thought which makes me catch my breath, slap a hand to the bony breast bone and give a little light laugh, choking daintily, “No, no, no!” The dog and I are just fine.
It’s the cat I couldn’t stand.
Poison in fur that cat.
But luckily the kitchen fitter stole her, popped her on a cushion in the front seat of his van and took her home for his mam. I made sure the anti-cat locks were on and didn’t linger at the doorway.
Bye cat, missing you already. Not. Slam.

We had some people to dinner recently, part of the massive catch up surge needed to pay back a million mates (yes, yes, I CAN count) feeding us without return over the past couple of years. One of whom’s daughter was the original owner of Poison Puss, before playing pass the parcel with her and fobbing her off on us nearly 12 years ago. For Medical Reasons. Cat's not Girl's. Like one needs a cat with Little Ways. My arm is silvery with scars from de-fleaing sessions involving far too many claws. Our friend remained unconvinced that I had had Mog’s best interests at heart when the re-homing issue raised its furry head, which I found kind of rude.

There were so very many bottles following this dinner party that there was no way the men would be able to lift the recycling box on the Friday, so I staggered to the car (three trips) with carrier bags full to dispose of them (noisily) at the pub. I wore my dark glasses.
The crashing of bottles into the bottle bank split the air for about 3 minutes, despite me tipping them in at speed. It seemed suddenly very public all this, and three minutes really rather a long time when one is standing sliding bottle after bottle after bottle into, hopefully, the right slot.
I got confused over some of the greens and whether they were really brown.

It had been a good evening which destroyed the next day. I can’t take it any more, though God knows I try.
But the food had been fab.
I started boasting about what a fantastic meal it was to T11 the moment I got up – weak, exhausted, but ready to brag. He stared at me appalled.
It’s funny. Most of the time I’m extremely dismissive of myself, but every now again, usually after a fabulously-cooked meal, I can become extremely, and perhaps unpleasantly, smug.
Not in front of the friends, no, I do have some shame and sense of propriety, and they were treated to the usual defensive brush off, but T11 hadn’t managed to leave the room fast enough so I could indulge to the hilt in some full-on praise of myself and my exceptional cooking skills.
The meal grew, a fish fond in a fisherman’s memory, to transcend mere Made By Me status but toddled off instead, promoted, into the portion of Me Map marked “should have won a Michelin.”
I called to E for corroboration.
“Was not that curry one of the best you have ever eaten?” I asked, thinking of the curry by now as if made by someone else, so perfect was it.
“Can’t remember,” he said, “Seemed ok.”
“It was perfect,” I reminded him warningly.

We all ate left overs for supper and quite a lot went into the bin. Flanked round which, were still many drunken soldiers of empty wine bottles, making the lid hard to reach. Reacquaintance with this dish forced something different to emerge from the curry, making me reassess my reaction to it.
We ate largely in silence, me wishing for my dark glasses, the others in subject-avoidance.
The beast of the night before, a worrisome thing which haunts me too often, shifted the furniture of my memory. Random phrases emerged and I fretted that I had in fact, contrary to my modest assumption, indulged in some begging for praise at the time, praise which wasn’t necessarily going to have been highly deserved. I saw a flushed face thrilled with herself, busily explaining the recipe, and cringed.

One thing I was pleased to spot, though, was that F9 had turned off the computer prior to my wending my self-congratulatory way to bed, so I had no nasty sessions with the Sent Box of my e-mail to confront the next day. Ain’t life grand.


Edward said...

First of all, Milla is a great cook. Inventive (i.e. she doesn't follow the recipe) and generous (I get VAST portions). I have no doubt that, when first cooked, the curry was fab. But as I had been responsible for emptying at least some of the "drunken soldiers round the bin" I honestly couldn't remember if it was world class. I'd be surprised if it wasn't - having eaten at the Michelin-starred "Benares", I can tell you that I'd rather eat Milla's curry any day or night.

Exmoorjane said...

Aw bless. (Edward's loyal comment). Love the idea of you demanding Michelin stars....also laughing merrily (and nodding head wildly) at the (seemingly endless) dumping of bottles in bottle bank. Cat? What cat? You lucky lucky girl. Get a new extension and, hey, you might lose the dog too....

Frances said...

Hello Milla,

I love the idea of cooking without recourse to recipes, unless it's baking when the chemistry sort of requires precision.

Hardly ever cook curries, because they take too long...I am usually in a rush to fix some supper to eat before I drink too much wine during the preparations (if you get what I mean?) I do like to add a tiny bit of turmeric to my rice dishes, though.

It's such a treat to get to read your blogs more frequently.


Fennie said...

Self-congratulation - we all deserve it once in a while, we can't always be in teenage self-loathing mode - is probably a dish best served hot and with yoghurt. Cold curry and empty wine bottles do not seem a happy combination. And there is always the dog. Does Lolly like curry. I'm wondering? On second thoughts maybe it is best to leave that query hanging in the (Feb)breze.

Cracking stuff as always Mil!

Sally's Chateau said...

Agree completely about the moggie but suggest you check your deleted box too...... from one who knows, shudder :)

Expatmum said...

Well you must have been half sober at the very least, to have resisted the urge to hit the keyboard. What's that saying - don't booze and blog?!

Pondside said...

Yes, be thankful for small blessings...now, did you make any phone calls?

Miss Penelope said...

Hmmmmmmmmmmm unfond memories of a breakfast party of my Mother's. Her world famous kedgeree was made and eaten by all. Only after did we realise that a bar of soap had fallen into the rice when it was being drained.

Not one person said a word or left any on the plate. It was disgusting.

Do prefer people to not be polite.

Inthemud said...

Did the dog like the cat? Cat probably pleased to go and live somewhere else. i think my cat would prefer another home, he hates our dogs.

I'm quiteconfused about the bottle bank, some separate the colours, others say all bottles. I think they all go into same recycling vat at factory, so don't worry!

Great blog, very witty.

Faith said...

Did you really get rid of the cat? Mind you, I've known some vile cats in my time.

Angel said...

I'm still laughing from the last blog!

And for some stupid reason I now have the image of you being more like Rhia in Butterflies in the kitchen (do you remember that or am I much older than you?)
Just don't let the dog try the curry-ok?!

Smiled about the cat thing-I don't miss our cat at all. Poor thing. She was very old when she died-it was a blessing for us all that the vet put her out of her misery. It wasn't pleasant at the end...

Dogs are so much better to clean up from than cats, take it from me!

Enjoy the bank holiday and practise being Doris Day

LittleBrownDog said...

My word, woman, you and your young man are veritable blogging machines! Now, don't talk to me about cats. I'm sure I can out-cat any of your disgusting cat anecdotes, and oddly enough, ours was a pass-the-parcel inheritance, too - we got two for the price of one on the grounds that the original owners' neigbours didn't like them 'going' in her garden. We managed to get rid of the totally incontinent one who suddenly had a heart attack whilst sitting on the arm of a chair and toppled stiff as a board to the floor. The other one, however, we have bragged too much about the numerous bad habits of, so it's no longer palm-offable, more's the pity.

Curries, though I do like. Are you going to pass on the recipe, or is it some closely guarded family secret only to be passed on in a dying breath to blood relatives?

Blossomcottage said...

Cat v Dog there of course is no competition, what cat would clear the cold curry in the morning leaving only fond memories in the minds of those who had eaten it hot and enjoyed every moment. I know of no such creature, only the loyal and greedy dog would be such a loyal friend, never the cat he would have turned his nose up at the best Dover Sole if he had a mind to. No give me the dog any day even if they do have a tendancy to dump the said cold curry from one end or the other in some unsuitable place later that day.

lampworkbeader said...

Just be thankful you didn't feed the last of the curry to the dog...
Keep on blogging. I love your writing.

Ernest de Cugnac said...

Missing cat; curry next; I'm sure this train of thought leads nowhere ...

Anyway Milla, I'm sure it was delicious. Curry never tastes the same next day (usually better, ha ha, just kidding).

The Lehners in France said...

Milla, your curry was lovely I'm sure you deserved your pat on the back. Left over curry the next day is even better, the flavours seem to marinade over night. I thought you were joking when you posted the comment on my blog about your cat. My hare lips gone now thank God. Debs x

kissa said...

I am a great believer in left overs tasting even better the next day so why don't I start a new trend of cooking the day before people come to eat so that we feast on left overs being ready on the right day. Does this make any sense?? I have a feeling it just won't catch on.

aims said...

Are you sure the cat went with the kitchen fitter and not into the curry?

btw - that's one of the cutest dogs I've ever seen! (no groaning now)

Frog in the Field said...

Aims wrote exactly what I was thinking.
Milla, you're scarily someone who reminds me of me.

DJ Kirkby said...

After laughing hysterically at most of this post I have one question for you: what slot do the blue wine bottles go in? I have a particular fondess for dry white wine in blue bottles...

blogthatmama said...

I love 'the beast of the night before' and the 'flushed face thrilled with herself', horribly familiar territory but at least you felt like a million dollars for a while!

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

Brillaint - I can see you down the bottle bank! We are the same. I loved your story about the dog poo. My two Jack Russells can drop a turd right when you least expect it. The wee swines have a sense of humour and ny god do they use it. One of them crapped on my neighbours new rug - never done that before never done it after. I think the dog knew we didn't like her much!

elizabethm said...

Milla you are on a blogging roll and long may it continue. Oh dear, I do recognise the boasting to children (and mine is probably about cooking too). Sadly I also recognise the flushed face looking for recognition. Oh dear.
We had four cats when we got here. Don't ask. Elder daughter pointed out some time ago that only mad bag ladies have four cats. Now there is only one left. I have cared for them all, I promise.

the mother of this lot said...

Milla, I am in AWE of your cat disposal expertise. Go to the top of the cat-hating class. Do you get the feeling I can't stand cats?

DevonLife said...

Oh send any left overs my way please, inedible or edible, just can't be arsed to cook. Bet it was delicious. and I'm not even drunk (yet)

Jaja said...

Ah curry!
Life can be grand indeed. And hasnt it been such an awful long time?
And what with all these numerous awards??

FairSailor said...

What a fantastic blog - Pure entertainment. Found you via Rot and am hooked! Thank you and keep it up.

CAMILLA said...

Eek, Cat sent off in a van, I did not know you had a car Milla, the only problem I have with cats is they kill the feathered friends.

Which reminds me Milla.... must make a vist to the bottle bank, my garage is fit to burst with empty's of the red stuff. I just 'chuck' them all in one skip, hoping for the best.!

Another great blog Milla.!


CAMILLA said...

Too much of the old vino as I type dear heart.... that should have read CAT not CAR!!!


KittyB said...

I don't know what made me laugh more, the blog or Camilla's typo comment!
That clinking walk to the bottle bank is called The Walk of Shame. I make S do it. I have no shame.

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mewmewmew said...

Which reminds me Milla.... must make a vist to the bottle bank, my garage is fit to burst with empty's of the red stuff. I just 'chuck' them all in one skip, hoping for the best.!

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