Today’s striking guest picture comes from my brother who describes it as ‘dusky’. I think he must have been in London yesterday evening.
We had summer indoors today and winter outside. They were brought to us by courtesy of the jasmine family.
In the garden there are now several clumps of promising snowdrops…
…but we are still waiting to see one in full flower.
The rhubarb crumble scenario is developing.
It might have been a suitable day for a cycle ride but a slight drizzle in the morning made me more than content to be sipping coffee with Sandy rather than getting wet. After he had left, I turned to the main business of the day which was making marmalade.
As those of you who make marmalade in the traditional manner will know, it is a lengthy process. The oranges have to be squeezed and sliced thinly which takes quite a lot of time in itself and then the resultant juice and fruit mixture needs to be simmered for at least two hours.
When the simmering is done, the sugar needs to be added and the mixture boiled until it is ready to set. Then it is left to settle for some time and the mixture stirred to distribute the orange peel evenly.
Finally it is put into jars and left to cool before being labelled and covered.
There may be time during the process when a moment can be found to stare out of the window…
…but today as often as not, when that moment came, the birds were lurking round the back of the feeder.
Sometimes a bird obliged though.
As well as the cooking, marmalade makers have to spend what seems like hours throughout the process in washing their hands to get the stickiness off and then wiping off anything they may have touched while turning on taps, opening cupboards or picking things up and putting them down.
Still when it is all done, the light might have gone for the day but the reward is there for all to see.
If we want enough marmalade to last us for a year. there might have to be another session!
I might have done something useful in the late afternoon but I was foolishly tempted to watch a bit of the Trump inauguration and found myself frozen into immobility as it unfolded and unable to tear myself away.
Finally, pangs of hunger got me out of my chair and I cooked a potato and feta bake for our tea.
It was quite a cooking day as I also made a fruity malt loaf in the breadmaker.
The evening brought sweet music as Mike and Alison came round and Alison and I played three familiar pieces which gave us great pleasure and soothed the spirit.
We are promised a sunny day tomorrow which will be most welcome.
I did find a flying bird among the orange peel.