My first Commission – Part 8 – Bugger

I thought I will finish shaping the handle today. Instead, I have to start all over again – the piece of cherrywood that I used had some deep cracks (they were not on the outside) that got too wide and too visible in addition to two unseemly knots. The knots themselves could be seen as a part of the wood, but the cracks kill it definitively.

I have just spent some 2 hours shaping a piece of firewood.

Jack’s Walk

The weather today has been my idea of perfect. Sunny and warm with low humidity and a gentle breeze that slowly pushed creamy clouds across an azure sky. If I could custom order the weather it would be exactly like today. It was so perfect that I made the time to take Jack for a walk in the woods and I know he appreciated it because his tail wagged the whole way around.

While we were there I stopped to talk to a very friendly spider who allowed me to take a photo which I’ve put below the fold for anyone interested.

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Residence Sunflowers – Part 6 – Itty Bitty Facehugger

Last year I have shown you bright yellow crab spider who was munching on bees. This year I did not see a grown-up one, only this one little baby. Still white, slightly translucent and tiny, about the size of a pinhead. Sorry for a bit blurry pictures, but the little bugger did not stop, it kept wandering about and performing strange gymnastics. And I have forgotten to take my monopod with me, so this is shot completely freehand.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

 

Jack’s Walk

Contemplating his next move ©voyager, all rights reserved

When Jack jumps into the water at the park or the river he’s accustomed to the ducks scattering away from him. Today this small flock of ducks didn’t scatter. Instead, they swam towards him and then dared him to come in. Now,  Jack isn’t one to go looking for trouble, but I’ve seen him stand his ground around dogs that are a lot bigger than him. He once took on a huge German Shepherd and was holding his own until we broke it up. “Take that,” Jack snorfed,  kicking up dirt with his back feet as walked away. He had swagger that day.

He did not have swagger today. Jack actually let those ducks keep him out of the water. Every time he went forward the ducks came forward. If he turned to the left so did the ducks. If he turned to the right so did the ducks. Those ducks patrolled that shore like warships in formation and Jack finally walked away. I think he made the right decision. They might be small, but those ducks meant business and at a ratio of seven to one they had the upper hand wing.

 

YouTube Video: Original Vs Reproduction – Which is better?

What I find the most interesting about his video is the realization that our modern perceptions of what is and is not beautiful are heavily skewed towards unreasonable and sometimes unachievable perfection. Sometimes perfection that you can only evaluate up so close, that you need a magnifying glass and calipers.

I blame the industrial revolution and mass-produced machined goods.

Residence Sunflowers – Part 5 – Bees

Of course. But not as many as I would like, unfortunately.

Our neighbor had beehives in her garden – her brother in law was a beekeeper. But he died a few years ago and none of his two sons took over. And thus bees disappear from the landscape, one old beekeeper dying at a time

And even solitary bees are becoming distressingly rare as they are increasingly more deprived of suitable food sources due to excessive rapeseed cultivation in our country because rapeseed brings biggest profits to the corporate oligarchs ruling our agriculture. Rapeseed all around is for bees about as healthy as nothing but dry bread and water is for humans.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

Tummy Thursday: Senegalese Food

There’s a saying in German that states that “the farmer won’t eat what the farmer doesn’t know”. It’s again this intersection of class and culture, where the educated classes take pride in “discovering” new tastes, while certain parts of the working class take pride in never trying anything new, especially no “furrin food”. Of course, both positions come with their racism, where the latter is more obvious than the former. I was lucky to be raised in a family that loved food. My grandparents could never travel the world in person, so they tried to travel it with their tummy, even though some of grandma’s creations would probably not have been recognised by the people who actually invented them. Mr, on the other hand was raised in a family that sees lasagna as exotic and his parents have never eaten a single Döner. Mr has tried to shed that attitude, but mostly ended up in a position where he will eat foreign cuisines, but only after they have been thoroughly approved by white people. Italian is standard, Chinese is ok, Greek is high end. So when we came upon a tiny Senegalese restaurant in Mataró, he was not happy when I proposed to eat there and the kids enthusiastically agreed.

Guess who enjoyed his meal the most?

The restaurant was tiny (less than 2m from side to side and probably 8-9 m long). The cook prepared three different dishes, as Senegale food is stews that take time to prepare, and starters, so we simply ordered one of each and shared among us.

©Giliell, all rights reserved Fish cakes. they were absolutely delicious and already hinted at an enormous amount of onions to come.

©Giliell, all rights reserved Yassa: chicken in an onion and veggies sauce with rice.

©Giliell, all rights reserved Thiéboudienne, the national dish. Seasoned rice with veggies and fish. Sorry for the blurry pic, I was hungry.

©Giliell, all rights reserved Mafé, a beef stew with peanut sauce.

I’ll definitely try to cook some of these, hopefully with better results than grandma…