Tuesday, February 12, 2019

The Auld Sod

(Source)
As some of you may have noticed, I was on the road this past weekend. While I was able to finish up "Bayonet Week," as juvat called it (I mean, come on man, it was two posts, not like it rivaled Skunk Week, which was three posts) on Saturday, you did get a rerun on Sunday. A wicked funny rerun (at least I thought so), but a rerun nonetheless.

As I deprived you of a new post on Sunday, I thought I might regale you with a tale of my weekend, wherein I returned to The Auld Sod, the land of my birth (sort of*). While I have, according to a DNA test taken by The Olde Vermonter, a great deal of Irish blood running in my veins, all the ancestral Gaels went to Scotland. No doubt one step ahead of the law.

Anyhoo, I digress.

The weekend started in grand fashion with Yours Truly attempting to find the leftover chili in the fridge. For you see, The Missus Herself was out visiting some of her elderly friends and left me to fend for myself. I mean how hard is it to nuke a bowl of leftover chili? (A recipe from The WSO which The Missus Herself had given a Korean twist, very tasty.)

Well nuking it was the easy part, finding it wasn't so easy. I mean how hard can it be, no doubt thought the love of my life, "I'll leave the chili right here, I mean it's red, it's right in the front of the fridge, even an idiot should be able to find it."

Well, this idiot did eventually find it. After carping on the phone to The WSO for a good five minutes as I searched high and low in that refrigerator. Which no doubt inspired my youngest to post the following on the Book of Face -


Ha, bloody ha. (The truth, it can sting.)

At any rate, after dining on the chili, it was off to the computational device to write Saturday's post and then search through the extensive archives here at The Chant to find a tidbit for to post on Sunday. While you may (or may not) have found that post amusing, I found it to be just as funny/embarrassing now as when the incident occurred and again when I wrote about it.

At any rate, Saturday's post had some good comments, which I answered Saturday night (near enough to midnight as dammit) on my cellphone with a rather spotty cell signal. Now Mom does live in the boondocks, so to speak, surrounded by lots of mountains, hills, valleys, and maybe two or three cell towers in about a thousand square miles. Yes, I am exaggerating, but not by much.

Big fat fingers, little tiny cellphone "keyboard," and maybe one to one and a half bars of connectivity. So of course, Beans has to make a crack about my loquaciousness rivaling PLQ's. Damning with faint praise right there. I thought I was being polite and succinct. I mean, I like letting you folks out there know that I read (and yes, cherish) your comments. (And I like to think that PLQ's comments are succinct, ya know, to the point.)

Anyhoo (again), up there in the north country of my birth (sort of) it is still winter. While I was expecting that, I hadn't expected the dearth of snow not thirty miles south of the Homeland. I mean, normally we start seeing beaucoup (pronounced boo-koo, heh, not) snow when approaching Worcester (pronounced Wustah, really) in the Massachusetts snow belt. Not much at all did we see, not even as we approached the New Hampshire line.

Sure, there was some back in the trees and on the side of the road that gets very little sun, but I'm used to seeing much more. (Like in that opening photo, that place isn't too far from where my maternal grandparents lived.) Even north of Keene the snow seemed sparse. Heck, the Connecticut River wasn't even frozen south of Bellows Falls (town of my birth, in  Vermont, nicht New Hampshire).

Just north of there the Connecticut was frozen. Solid enough where I saw a couple of ice fishermen, not out on the river proper but in one of the setbacks. The Missus Herself opined that "surely they must be crazy people" to be out there. Well, the wind was blowing and the "feel like" temperature had to be in the teens. So she had a point, especially as they had no shelter other than the leafless trees along the shore. Ah well, northern New Englanders (of which I am one) are a bit daft. In a good way mind you.

But the visit to my Mom's house was pleasant. We had a nice meal at The Sumner House (a local eatery) on Saturday night I had a New York strip steak with a bourbon glaze topped with caramelized onions, green beans (or haricot vert when I'm "putting on airs," which is often), and a very nice baked potato. All washed down with a Sam Adams (the variety of which I don't remember). Afterwards we retired to the Elks Club where fortuitously some of my Mom's and our mutual friends happened to be, where I sampled a local brew called a Rainbow Red Ale from the Trout River Brewing Company of Springfield, Vermont, the place I was raised. Quite tasty, though it tasted neither like trout nor like river (which was a good thing). I was sore tempted to have another, but as I was the driver, I opted to behave.

The trip, though short, was grand. The sky was blue, the roads were dry, and the scenery was lovely. I do so enjoy going up north to the ancestral homeland. As we weren't able to make it up there at Christmas time nor in January (due to weather, ill health, and the non-availability of the feline staff's Godmother, which is what our next door neighbor calls herself, she is a most excellent cat sitter as both Anya and Sasha really like her, something which doesn't apply to many humans).

Monday it was back to work and back to eating "healthy." The Missus Herself has declared a fatwa on my substantial bulk and is determined to get me down to a weight where I won't be mistaken for a beached whale when I get near the water. For once I am attempting to comply for reasons which will be revealed at some time in the not so distant (I hope) future. (Think happy thoughts, no dire premonitions here, all will be revealed in due course.)

At any rate, I'm back and I shall endeavor to avoid reruns for the foreseeable future. I do get so lazy at times...



Good song, good album.



* I keep writing "sort of" as I was born and raised in Vermont, just across the river from where Mom lives now. Same neck of the woods though dontcha know? As my Mom and Dad are both from New Hampshire, and both sets of grandparents lived there, I consider the Granite State to be every bit a part of The Auld Sod as Vermont.

74 comments:

  1. I am glad you eventually got fed, anyway. I just came in from shovelling. For the second time, tonight. About six inches in the ground, with another 4-6" coming by midnight.

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    Replies
    1. They're calling for snow here. Turning to rain tomorrow. Lovely slush.

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    2. I must brave the horrid environs of... partly cloudy and 77 degrees, with a 90% chance of rain. Oh, the horrors, the horrors...

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    3. You didn't mention the humidity...

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    4. OH GAWD! TEH HUMIDITY! TEH HORROR OF HUMIDITY!! The Chafing, it Burnssssss.

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    5. We almost drowned... It rained for 30 minutes.... The suffering and anguish...

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  2. A road trip provides a nice break doesn't it? Not as much snow here to the west of you Scott, only three inches down so far with it continuing until this afternoon. Time to crank up that snow blower!

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    1. It does indeed.

      Snow, you guys see a lot of it.

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  3. Yes, once in a while my HDVS (Husband Decreased Vision Syndrome) flares up and I have to ask for help in finding things around the home.
    On the other hand, and unlike the person who continues to share my life, I have never, ever, been tempted to move the possessions of the spouse from where she has placed them, to a new location within our home.
    The ensuing conversation begins with me saying, "Why did you feel compelled to move my stuff?" and then the conversation becomes, hmm, sprightly.

    It's quite possible the explanation lies in some yet undiscovered gender related vision difference.
    It could be "Hubby-Vision" as explained in this video.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3nllrCss2CU

    Good post.


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    1. I am pleased to know that there is an acronym for that.

      I never, ever, touch the wife's stuff. That would be fatal I think.

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    2. Fatal at the Hiroshima level, should I make that mistake.

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    3. Yup, complete and total devastation, we're talking post-apocalyptic chaos on a global scale.

      Or something like that.

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    4. Blame your wife's moving your stuff on the Sock Monster. The Sock Monster has taken temporary possession of your wife and done it's demonic 'hiding' thing. Next time she moves your stuff remember to vigorously sprinkle her with Holy Water and smack her fulsomely on the forehead with a Bible. That should fix it.



      By the time you wake up, you won't ever mind having your stuff moved again...

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    5. Hahaha!

      I should think not, provided one wakes up at all!

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    6. After careful consideration I've decided that my continued good health is more important than pestering her about moving my stuff.

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    7. And now you see why Man is smarter than Woman...

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  4. Working on the bikini bod for summer, eh?? Good luck. I pulled a sinus infection out of an allergy attack a few weeks ago. Lost 10 pounds the first week, then gained it back the next 2 weeks.

    Glad you still have a family to visit up in the north woods...

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    Replies
    1. Hahaha! Bikini bod, yeah, that's it. I need to look my best for the cover of GQ one of these days.

      And yes, it's good to have some kin left up there.

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    2. So, THAT’s the secret retirement plan. Male model in GQ. That should seal the deal for them. (Or their fate!)

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    3. Hahaha!

      Need a reference? I mean what with those dashing fighter pilot good looks of yours? You would be a natural. ;)

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    4. Not... the SPEEEEEEEEDOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

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    5. Good idea! Photos to follow.

      NOT!

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    6. Beans,
      As the FNG you're allowed some errors. However..... We NEVER EVER mention Sarge and

      the SPEEEEEEEEDOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

      Not even in jest. The consequences of him putting one on are just too horrifying to even imagine!

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    7. Back when I was young and skinny, a set of nuthuggers wasn't so bad. But now? Even I have more fashion sense.

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    8. juvat - Thanks for correcting the lad.

      But I believe Pandora's box has been opened...

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    9. Beans - Hahahaha!

      Nuthuggers? Where do you come up with this stuff?

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    10. 4th grade. Most of my really bad jokes are fondly remembered from 4th grade.

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    11. A fine time in a young man's life.

      I just wish I remembered more of it!

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  5. Re: Bayonet week. A wise man once told me “Never let the truth interfere with a good story.” Just followin’ guidance,Boss.

    Good post. Had some snow down here this week. Will post pics.

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    1. Are you kidding? I loved it, got to link back to "Skunk Week" as well.

      Snow in Texas? Well, truth be told, I went through Amarillo once with snow out the yin-yang. Or wazoo if you will.

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    2. Please pass on any mass-cannibalisms in Austen stories you wish. ;)

      No. Really. The sufferings of the Left fuel my inner passion. :)

      No. Really. I live vicariously through the sufferings of Leftists, Bolsheviks, Socialists, and Communist Prats. Because my wife won't let me hit them with our van...

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    3. "Leftists, Bolsheviks, Socialists, and Communist Prats"

      Welcome to the Department of Redundancy Department.

      :)

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    4. re: snow in Texas - wasn't all that unusual in Dallas when I was growing up, but certainly not an annual event. Ice was more common, and I swear N. Texas drivers thought that if they pressed hard on the accelerator pedal, they'd eventually burn through the ice and get traction! I also remember back in the 90's when San Antonio got about 15" of snow, and I guess they got more than double that back in 1985. Totally paralyzed the city! (same thing happened in Raleigh in 2000, then we had a Snowmageddon a couple of other times when drivers were stranded all over town, even to the point of abandoning their cars!)

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    5. Wow, Google says record snowfall for San Antonio was 13.5" in 1985! That beats Plano's (DFW area) record 12" (in one night) in 2010.

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    6. That's even a lot of snow up here in New England. But San Antonio? Wow!

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    7. Traffic is still backed up in San Antonio 34 years after the fact. Always wondered why...Now I know.

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  6. Care to share the Chili recipe? Being a fan of both Chili and Korean cuisine, I'd like to give it a try.

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    1. I'll have to get the original from The WSO then interrogate the spousal unit as to the mysterious extra spices she added. (I didn't think it all that spicy, then again, I'm jaded.)

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    2. Interesting. I made Mrs. Andrew's Chili on Sunday for Monday (it always tastes better, like soup or stew, the second day, after the flavors have mingled and settled.) Sorry to say it doesn't meet Texas standards, as it has beans and corn in it.

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    3. One would expect your chili to have beans in it. ;)

      Is it legal to use "Texas" and "standards" in the same sentence. ;)

      I demand beans in my chili. Well, demand is a strong word, but I like beans.

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    4. To my mind, chili without beans is not chili. A spicy meat dish perhaps, but not chili.

      Paul

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    5. I like the way you think, Paul!

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    6. OldNFO would disagree with you, Paul, but he's a purest. I typically add beans for the thickening as well as the additional protein.

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    7. OldNFO was eating chili before early man learned to cultivate beans.

      Anyway, that's what I heard. ;)

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    8. OldNFO is in good company - while my mom's recipe has beans, and she was a native Dallasite, Southern Living says this on the subject:
      "
      To bean, or not to bean. When you’re making a pot of chili, that is the question. And depending on whether or not you’re from Texas, there is a very definitive answer.

      If you’re from Texas: NO.

      If you’re from elsewhere: Maybe."

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    9. Well, I ain't from Texas.

      (Then again, I'm a Yankee, what do I know?)

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    10. If you're like most Yankees we here in the South deal with, you'll tell us everything you know, often, loudly, continuously, all the while interspersing it with "Back in..." and "It's better in..." and other helpful suggestions as to how we can make the South more Northernish.

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  7. Can't wait to hear the reason behind your wife's wish to whittle you down a peg or two.

    As to the actual post, glad you weren't having to drive snow and ice covered roads. Great way to mess up a family trip.

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    1. The snow and ice thing is why an earlier planned trip (in January) didn't occur.

      As to the whys and wherefores regarding whittling, I'm awaiting clearance from HQ for that tale.

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    2. I do, in my old age, remember you postponing your visit to your mom's...

      Waiting on the clearance. With baited breath. But you better hurry, as the little shrimp tickle the vocal cords.

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  8. Beans giving grief about loquaciousness? If that ain't the industrial sized pot calling the kettle! And besides, this is your soapbox, so there's no such thing as loquaciousness.

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    1. He was being somewhat sarcastic about my terse comments on Saturday's post.

      Somewhat? Like totally.

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    2. Terse? As wet as the normal rainfall in the Atacama desert...

      One of the reasons I have yet to get a 'fancy' phone is my fat fingers are rather large for a keyboard. Since I only use my phone to keep in contact with my wife when I'm out of the house and not with her, I think a flip-phone is okay. She wants me to get a fancy one so that I can keep memos and lists in it. I don't because I don't want memos and lists...

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    3. But, but, I like memos and lists. Thing is though, only I get to make them.

      I used to have a flip phone, then the progeny overwhelmed it with photos of the grandkids and granddogs. Poor phone never had a chance.

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    4. Bah.. You kids and your newfangled devices. What next? Dancing? Bahhh.

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    5. Well yes, you caught me in a "misstatement." Should have been "elektronik drums."

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  9. Indeed, today's offering is a good tale.

    We have some snow on the ground here where I live; however, today the weather gods can't seem to make up their minds as to snow or rain. Sometimes offering both at the same time.

    Thanks for the post.
    Paul L. Quandt

    P.S.: If you continue to use my name ( initials ), I'm going to demand a percent of the revenue generated by this blog. ( Yes, yes, I know, x percent of zero is zero. Anyway, I enjoy seeing my name is lights [ so to speak ] ). Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Well, you're a local celebrity in these parts. You're "kind of a big deal" around here.

      So yes, from this day forward ye shall receive 10% of the proceeds, such as they are, until such time as we actually make money. Which ain't never gonna happen no how.

      (Your 10% comes out of Tuna's cut, don't tell him.)

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    2. To quote a good friend of mine: " Hahaha ".

      Paul

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    3. Whew. Glad it's not coming out of my commission checks.

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    4. So Beans, did I read that right? You want to chip in as well?

      What a team player you are. (Or is this another case of me not reading your comment correctly. Too bad, I already submitted the request...)

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    5. Ha! I'll just complain to your management and TMH will shut you down for good! Um, maybe not. Come to think of it. Can't even imagine the things that your lovely wife would say in a multitude of languages if some strange fat man said you were being mean to him. Say to both of us.

      Had enough of my ears being used as handled and convenient places for wooden spoons to percussively touch growing up to possibly invoke those measures. And since my mother is shorter than all three of us boys, she'd use the dreaded nipple twister to pull us down to proper ear-yanking or spoon-smacking range.

      I just remembered that I can eat while wearing my helmet. Not easily, but I can...

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Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)