So Nick and co went fishing on a gift of a day. As Nick remarked when he looked down into the otherwise murky Marina waters, “it is gin-clear”! They fished for six hours and came home with a small pollack and a few whiting. Well that’s better than nothing. Arriving back at 3.30 or thereabouts they poured themselves “a petit whisky” and retired to the pool table, only to be plucked from their game 15 minutes in by Daniel over the road who came to fetch them to join the rest of the ‘team’ watching England play France, before they all returned to Paris. It was a good day to be a Rosbif amongst Frogs!!
By this stage I was on countdown to supper time, Daniel, Anne and Francois due to arrive about 8. Francois arrived early to help Nick troubleshoot some problems setting up the hard drive which has hundreds of films on it in the gym.
I cooked a Persian lamb dish which Rosemary Payne cooked for us a week ago when we drove to their home just outside Portsmouth for supper and some shell talk with Bas. I also cooked the Marmalade Bread and Butter Pudding she had given us. Not a good idea to experiment on guests but it seemed to work ok, although it all took much longer than I bargained and the kitchen looked like a bomb-site after. I even cooked some of the whiting fillets caught earlier as slivers coated in batter. As a family we have always called these goujons but Anne tells me they are ‘beignets’ and my dictionary tells me this is French for ‘fritters’ so I like that……….. Fun evening, such delightful neighbours and friends.
Monday and I really must settle down to draw up the assessment of some archeaological marine shell from a Middle Age castle at Restormel in Cornwall. I have promised this for mid-March. It is a day’s work but I only get to start it in the evening. The morning is taken up with examining a cobble Nick hooked whilst fishing. He brings these little bits of seabed back to me so I can check them out for their marine life. They often have pretty seaslugs on them, not the slimy horrors we find on land (and not everyone thinks they are horrible either) but exquisite and colourful animals which tend to feed on a range of other marine invertebrates, many of these carrying toxins which the slugs can take on board for their own use – makes them poisonous to eat and therefore protects them in turn from predation.
Check out Jim Andersons Scottish Nudibranchs website (see link) and view his gallery.
The phone rings and whoops, there is Gerard, an octogenarian who owns the boat opposite Nick’s and who loves to go fishing with Nick, because Nick has know-how. Does Nick want to go out to play? Yes please.
After my lunch I wrote some cards then drove up to Marie-Christine to take her up on her invitation to a session in their hot tub. The afternoon is warm and the tub is sited in a sun-trap. We get in and it feels like a too hot bath. We struggle for 15 minutes then have to get out and it is then I notice the temperature is 40.5 degrees and that I look like a lobster! It seems those 4 naughty lads from Saturday night jacked up the heat.
Back at the house Nick has just returned with No Fish. This is unusual as March is the month for pollack and is the basis for the apparent false pretence under which Nick persuaded me to sign up for 4 weeks in St V! No matter, we have some tea and a chunk of Marmalade pudding and cream and I finally get round to tackling the oyster shell assessment.