Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I Hate Shopping, Coras, WWF,

I hate shopping for clothes. Very unfeminine of me, but I really do loathe it. Obviously, occasionally and infrequently, I am forced to go to the stores. Yesterday was one of them. I basically wanted shorts. I supposed I am actually a bit late in the season for that, don't you have to buy shorts in the winter??? Anyway I couldn't find any, maybe I will have more luck in the States next month although its still late in the season. I know I am obese, overweight, bloody big, but I really end up feeling like this picture when I have been shopping. I see women much, much bigger than I am who seem to have reasonable clothes, but can I find something decent, no way. If the shorts fitted me round the middle, the legs were designed to fit three people a side and looked ridiculous. Not only that I was brought up in the days where you didn't have to sort through racks and racks of clothes in the hope of maybe finding something. I get hot, frustrated and very irritable. Actually, I did do well for assistance today in two of the stores I went to, but the racks and racks of things were still there. Matt, luckily, is very good at looking for me and seems to have lots of patience. Yes I know, I am lucky. Of course summer decided to arrive this week which didn't make trying on clothes any more enjoyable. As a consolation we went to the new Cora's in Kitchener, hasn't been open very long. They were having trouble with slippery floors because of the condensation, you could have gone a right purler if you weren't warned. They had just turned on the A/C and it was expected to make it better. It reminded me of when we were in the Dominican Republic and because we got a lot of rain, similar tiled floors in the main building were as slippery as all get out and I did actually fall once. However, I ended up buying a pair of flip flops, surprisingly, which had a sole which didn't slip on these wet tiles. Anyway, I placed my order then saw a notice about their Pacifico Salad which has the ingredients for lox on a bagel plus a salad. I threw them for a loop because they have never served it before in this restaurant, however, when it arrived, it was very good. I had an email from the World Wildlife Fund yesterday part of which was talking about the 350 new species they have found in the Himalayas. To me this is incredible that there are still so many species undiscovered. The article is here if you would like to see it together with all the pictures - the one shown is a flying frog. I quote "Kathmandu, Nepal - Over 350 new species including the world's smallest deer, a "flying frog" and a 100 million-year old gecko have been discovered in the Eastern Himalayas, a biological treasure trove now threatened by climate change." I think this is absolutely fascinating. I am running late this morning as we are defrosting the freezer. Not an enjoyable job although much easier with an upright than a chest version. We end up with lots of soggy towels which have been spread on the floor to catch the overflow. I have mentioned before that I get a regular email from Joe Barkson's World Wide Recipes and this morning he published a bean soup. I love beans and as this is a variation on Minestrone which I enjoy very much, I thought I would pass it on. Today's Recipe The Tuscan version of minestrone is noteworthy for the many types of beans it usually includes. The varieties I have listed below are just suggestions, so feel free to use any small beans (small so they all cook at the same rate) that are available to you. Tuscan Bean Soup (Minestrone alla Toscana) 1/4 cup (60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for garnish 1 onion, chopped 1 carrot, chopped 1 rib celery, chopped 2-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped 3 quarts (3 L) water Several sprigs of fresh herbs such as thyme, rosemary, sage, celery leaves, and bay leaves, tied in a bundle with twine 1/2 cup (125 ml) each of four to six types of dried legumes such as red lentils, green lentils, brown lentils, split peas, cranberry beans (barlotti), white navy beans (cannellini), small kidney beans, baby lima beans, or black-eyed peas 1/2 cup (125 ml) pearl barley Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste Heat the olive oil in a large pot over moderate heat and saute the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic until tender but not brown, about 5 minutes. Add the legumes and barley and cook, stirring frequently, for 1 minute. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until the beans are tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove and discard the herb bundle before serving. Drizzle with olive oil immediately before serving, or put some olive oil in a cruet on the table for diners to add themselves. Serves 6 to 8. Have a great day.