Since our Sedi, the little German Shepherd, had her stroke last month her hearing is, shall we say, not what it should be.
There are advantages.
She no longer scrambles for cover when I use the microwave. Or the oven. Or the printer. Or anything else that makes a noise.
She can’t hear the thunder if there’s a storm, so she no longer tries to climb into bed with us. (Only storms at night are scary.)
Emma, who’s is very pretty but a bit of an empty dish, is also no longer afraid of storms. She hears the thunder and looks at Sedi (boss bitch). Sedi is sleeping soundly so Emma (apparently) assumes there’s nothing to be afraid of and goes back to sleep, too.
On the other hand, our twice daily walks are getting to be a challenge.
I used to say, in a loud voice, ‘Walkies’ (see below) and they would both go charging for the door.
Now I have to clap my hands, stamp my feet and shake my walking stick to get their attention.
We finally get out the door, and Sedi heads off in the wrong direction, Emma following.
Since she can’t hear, I have to run to get in front of her to turn them both around.
They used to just follow wherever I led.
Now I look back and their doing the ‘You go’, ‘No, You go’, ‘No, you go.’ routine.
So, I clap and dance around and wave my stick some more until they finally meander over to see what all the fuss is about.
Thankfully, we live out in the middle of nowhere, or more than just the dogs would be curious.
Once I get them a hundred metres or so away from the gate, we get down to business and go for our walk.
By then, I’m exhausted.
I’m accustomed, of course, to all the cute little American sayings, which sound so perfectly normal to me I can’t think of a single example.
But some of the British ones always make me chuckle.
Our friend in Spain, about as proper a Brit as one can find (Oxford, Cambridge and all that) and Emma’s former human, always shouts ‘Walkies’ when it’s time to take the dogs out.
Here are a few more of my favorites:
Wakey, wakey! = Wake-up
Brekkies = Breakfast (There is a poular cereal called ‘Ready-Brek’.)
Bikkies = Biscuits (known in the US as cookies – hmmmm)
Speaking of food – next week is the big American food holiday: Thanksgiving.
If you’re looking for an easy, slightly decadent, rather impressive side dish….
How about Potatoes Anna?
Based on the traditional Pommes Anna, I alternated the layers of white potato with layers of sweet potato.
I also made one with just sweet potatoes, and they are so creamy it came out to be more of a pudding, with the layers kind of melting into each other. The white potatoes gave the dish more body.
I didn’t peel the potatoes – I like both the appearance and the taste (and it’s healthier).
1/3 cup butter
1 large or 2 medium white. waxy potatoes, 12oz. 350gr total
1 or 2 sweet potatoes, roughly the same size, 12oz. 350gr total
salt & pepper
Clarify butter – that is: melt butter in small pan over low heat just so that it is melted. You will notice the white milk solids in the butter. We don’t want these. With a small spoon skim off as much of the floating milk solids as you can. Then carefully pour the clear butter into a glass measuring cup leaving behind the remaining solids.
Using a basting brush butter the insides of a small glass baking dish (large enough to just hold the potatoes and, preferably, with deep sides) with a little of the butter.
Slice the potatoes into paper thin slices, using a mandolin, box slicer, food processor, whatever you have. Line the bottom of the baking dish with white potato, brush very lightly with butter. Add a layer of sweet potato, brush with butter. Repeat layers until you have used all of the potatoes. If you use salt & pepper put a little on the middle and top layers.
In a perfect world your potatoes should reach or almost reach the top of the dish. Cover with foil and bake in 400F (200C) oven for 45 minutes. Uncover and continue baking an additional 15 minutes or until brown on top and knife goes into center easily. Remove and let rest for 5 – 10 minutes. Invert on to a large plate and slice into wedges to serve.
This should serve 4.