Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Cucinare in Italia
My D and MIL had a mouse called Gerald. Unfortunately, Gerald passed away recently. Fortunately he left us a few Euros in his will.
In memory of Gerald (OK it was Christmas dosh from D&MIL) we have bought a pasta maker. What a machine. It is so heavy. It really does make fantastic pasta in sheets, tagliatelle or fettuccine. You can get other “rollers” for it to make other types of pasta too.

One of the things you have to do is to dry the pasta for a short time before you cook it off. Well I thought long and hard about this and finally came up with a perfect solution. Eccola qua:

Are we modern or what!
We had a proper IT person come over yesterday to do the business and get our wireless network up and running. We were only able to have her come over because the DIL very kindly sent us the wireless router needed – they are twice the price over here.
Now we all know the great things you can do with computers. They are totally invaluable, certainly to us they are. But when it comes to nuts and bolts (that phrase shows you how little we know) and how they all work together, we just stand around drinking cups of coffee and tea and scratch our unmentionables getting nowhere. You can see the dilemma can’t you? No progress is made at all. We might as well be given a street map in Cyrillic whilst standing on one side of Moscow and be told to go to the other side.

It said on the box, “Just three easy steps and you are ready to go!” Oh yes? Penny did encounter some technical problems and so we were even more pleased that she was there. I have to admit that she did suffer a little bit of discomfort, when some rubble started to fall on her head. This of course was down to yours truly.
We have a slightly botched telephone wiring system, which had to be tweaked – do you like that word? Sounds very much as though I know exactly what I am talking about. This tweaking involved telephone wire, the liberal use of a hammer drill and many torches. I refrained from using my head torch which my son bought me and I find invaluable especially when working in confined spaces and require the use of both hands, but La Duchessa will not be seen dead with me, even in the pitch black outside, wearing it. So what chance did I have using it with other people here?

The hammer drilling went well, at least from my point of view, but then I was above drilling down, whilst the others were underneath. After I cleared up the rubble and Penny cleaned the bits of brick and cement from her hair and clothes, she got back to getting us into the 21st century.
At last everything was working. It is very good.
We can both be on the Internet at the same time, so doubling our research time, share files on each computer, print remotely from the laptop and we can take the laptop upstairs and be on the Internet with no wires. Brilliant.
You may well ask, if it so good why didn’t we do it earlier? Shut up.

Man’s best friend
They say that a dog is man’s best friend. The idiot who first coined that saying should be shot. No, not really, just severely beaten.

We have had to erect a fence across the top of the estate to keep the hound in. It has worked well so far – three days – and he does love staying outside, digging rather large holes in vegetable patches and around olive trees, and generally annoying the cats. He just cannot understand why the cats won’t play with him. He is so clumsy with them. He stands on them and pushes them with his muzzle and his huge tail wagging with unalloyed joy. They in return put their ears back and snarl and hiss at him. It makes no impression on him whatsoever. He does keep us very amused.
We can’t wait till we can keep the door open all the time and Bert can wander in and out as he pleases. Hopefully it won’t be long now.

Bertie’s sister and friend were returned in good nick to their owners last Sunday. When we got back we did think of going back to bed.
After another week of Bertie and Jess together and we were knackered. They are relentless together. If you look at information about how much exercise puppies should have, the so-called experts say they should have little to begin with and gradually increase it. This advice is extremely hard to follow in their case. When Jess is off the lead, she goes like an Exocet missile straight into Bertie and starts to bite him and barking at him. We manage to get Bertie’s lead off and then begins a continuous running and barking period that will not end until they are back on the leads. They go off like cross country runners bumping, biting, snarling at each other but running at 100 meter pace, all the time. It’s almost as bad when they are in the house. To try and get them to calm down and pace themselves is a complete non-starter. It was no wonder that Bertie virtually slept from Sunday morning to Monday afternoon. He was cream-crackered as well. Jess reminds us a lot of Jazz, a little black and white Springer we had. Unfortunately, she had a terrible liver disease and died just before her 3rd birthday. But she was definitely a bit like Jess.

******STOP PRESS NEWS*******

Just had lunch; let Bertie out; found away out of Stalag Casa Grotta. Agghhhhhh. Need to check perimeter fencing. Put out an ABP (that’s an all points bulletin for those who have never watched an American cops show). Apprehended fugitive bounding across neighbour’s estate. Came quietly with promise of some doggy treats – that’s Bertie, not me . Back in custody. Check of perimeter fence revealed two possible ingresses and egresses. Both have now been sealed off and mined. Report ends.

La Duchessa and the use of English
Readers of this blog will have seen that there have been a few examples of the improper use of the English language by she who must be obeyed.
Last week she accused me of stealing the hot water bottle. Somehow the bottle found itself on my side of the bed in the morning. That is unusual. It normally never strays from La Duchessa’s side as it fears for its very existence. But this one time, it appeared on my side.
She said “L’uomo chi fa, why did you take the hottie?” “I didn’t.” I protested. “You must have pushed it over to my side.”
“Nonsense. The hottie is on your side of the bed, Aero, you have stolen it” she stated. Whilst trying, badly, to contain my mirth, I said “La Duchessa, I think you mean Ergo, not Aero.” She looked flustered. “Oh bother. I’m going to stop using such big words” she said. I couldn’t face saying that both Aero and Ergo consist of only four letters and she was now reducing her verbal output to words of three letters or less.
Anyway, I still maintain that the hot water bottle came over to my side of its own accord and under no coercion from me.

Ciao, Mantenere la fede

No comments: