Sunday, November 16, 2008

What nicer way to spend a Saturday night than with friends. Old friends, new friends, friends young or old, it doesn't really matter, what is important is that you are with people you care about and who care about you. In my mind being invited to someones home is the highest compliment you can be paid. They are opening up not only their home but an insight into their lives and how they live, allowing you a glimpse into their lives. It was with great pleasure we accepted such an invitation on Saturday night. These were very new friends in our lives. Our connection? We were introduced by someone, who, knowing both ourselves and our new friends were from Scotland thought we might like to get together. Then it got weird. Not only did we share a country in common but we had lived a mile or so from each other at different times in our lives, although our paths had never knowingly crossed, we knew people in common and our friend even went to school with my cousin. We were destined to meet. Two couples far from home, completely by chance being introduced, finding we are now living only 10 mins apart and sharing a history. The history is such an important factor because when you are so far from home it is nice to share news with someone who knows exactly where you are coming from.
So Saturday night arrived. As with new friends there is always a certain apprehension. This lasted only a few minutes. Immediately we were settled into comfy chairs in front of a roaring log fire, handed a gin & tonic, and the night had begun. It went for a bit of the time something like this, "Did you know such a person had died" "No, is her husband still alive?" "Don't know but I'll find out" We went through a small list then decided to move on to cheerier pastures. Find we know several people in common, and had fun catching up with news each of us brought to the table from home.
Now we moved to the dining room. A lovely room lit by soft candlelight, find it is much kinder to me these days than an overhead light. We started with a bowl of roasted parsnip soup. It was bursting with flavour of caraway seeds and other delicious spices. The bowls were scraped clean. On to the main course, chicken stuffed with bacon and cheese with a creamy orange sauce, yummy, wild rice and mange tout.I savoured every mouthful and left an empty plate. For dessert a pastry filled with Cream and served with cherries. By this time I was so full and had to leave a little on the plate. We were all four of us now well fed, and filling up nicely on the wine. We retreated to the basement where the men played pool and indulged in their shared love of Malt Whisky. We girls listened to music from our past, our feet itching to get up and dance to Rod Stewart. Then things mellowed we listened to Andrew Bottcelli and caught up on more news from home. Finally at 3-00am, yes am, we headed home, thanks to the kindness of their son who very kindly offered to drive us home. We had enjoyed a wonderful evening, we feel as if we have known these people for ever. Thank you Jim and Val for a perfect evening. Hope we can do it again soon.
Sunday. Maybe that last glass of wine hadn't been entirely necessary, but I did enjoy it and that's what matters, isn't it? After a longer than usual Sunday morning in bed, it seemed that a healthy smoothie was the way to go for breakfast. A good start to the day and a way of feeling less guilty about the over consumption of food and drink the previous night. Who am I kidding I felt no guilt or regret!

2 ripe mangoes
1 peeled chopped banana
400ml/14oz milk (soya would be good but I did not have any in the fridge)
handful of ice cubes
runny honey to taste
125g/4oz blueberries.

Blend everything apart from blueberries until smooth. Pour into tall glass and decorate with the blueberries. Enough for 4 glasses.

My blueberries decided to sink! Didn't make for such a beautiful photograph but tasted good anyway.
Next Saturday night dinner with friends we have known since shortly after arriving in US 5 years ago. This time dinner in a restaurant, but knowing our friends as we do another fun night is on the cards.


Bro. Jason Parker said...

I truly hopr to go to Scotland some day. I am in the process of learning The Scotish heritage(just started really looking into it.) I think my Grandfather on my mothers side was from Scotland. My mother never talked about her family. I only met my Grandfather Once or twice as a kid. I think they lived in Kansas. My Grandfather Was Richard Carr. Is that a Scotish name? Oh well, maybe some day I'll learn more about him.

Jacqui said...

Bro.Jason, Carr is a big name in Scotland. Have you heard of Carr's Table Water Biscuits. I know the y are sold all over the world. Well that ia a Scottish Company. Good luck tracing your heritage.

Val said...

Thank-you for your kind words. I do agree there is nothing better than a night with friends epecially if they can understand everything you say !!!!! it was great not having to repeat myself and I could also throw in a few slang words too!!! It is hard when you are so far from home but when you meet someone not only from your country but from your hometown it makes me very happy, knowing that I can talk to you and you know where I am coming from means alot. I know we have many more fun nights ahead. By the way the Scotch eggs were a great hit Craig loved them.