Friday, February 26, 2010

Hola, Amigos...

You are cordially invited to:


when: tonight at 7pm
where: Casa Cornwell, Maberga, Italy
why: introduce our southern italian pals, Augusto and Lina, to Mexican cuisine

Post Party tomorrow right here on Oliveknitting, in which we see photos and watch videos of our friends trying to be really polite about tonight's dining experience.

PS. please don't anyone mention to Augusto and Lina that what we are serving is really not Mexican food.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Oh my god...

...I just remembered that I have a blog.

So sorry about that, you see, Das Needles ladies met on Monday this week instead of the normal Thursday, and well, you see, Mette, being the always thoughtful knitting/crocheting mentor had found this lovely granny square blanket on the net, but, well, it's probably more accurate to describe Mette as, like, a complete addiction enabler, because you see, she didn't, like, just send me the link so I could, like, oooo and ahhhh over the beautiful blanket and let it drop there because, like, the pattern is in Danish, oh no, not that Mette, she's a get-to-it gal, so, you see, like, before I had even finished, like, wiping the spittle from my chin, girl friend had printed out the pattern, picked up her 4mm hook, instructed me to do the same and, like totally started translating that pattern, and well, that was, like, 4 days ago, and I haven't really been the same since, you could call it, like, some kind of granny smack high, or a binge or something like that, I don't know what, but, like, I've got it in such a bad way that today I decided I need some display space for my smack, you know, like, some place where I can hang the completed rocks, I mean blocks so I can just, like, marvel at their beauty without having to,like, handle them, I mean, like so I can look at them WHILE I'm making more of them, so, like, I was attaching some clothespins to my studio shelves so I could, like I said, hang the smack and, like, I was superglueing these pegs so my preciouses wouldn't, like, you know, like, fall on the dirty ground or anything and I, like, well, like, I was in such a rush to get back to the colors and yarn and hooks and rounds and waves and, like, all that beautiful stuff that makes a granny square a granny square and well, I sort of superglued the right half of my mouth together, but it's, like ok because I was,like, so grateful and happy that it wasn't my right hand because, well, like, I've taught myself to write and draw and stuff with my left hand but, like I'm just not good enough with the hook yet to be, like, a lefty, so like it would have been this, like, total disaster, of, like, EPIC proportions if I had accidentally superglued the pin to my right hand or maybe a couple of those fingers together or something that would have just been too much, I mean, I might have lost it but anyway, the mouth thing, besides being a bit uncomfortable is not such a big deal, actually, it's,like, become a really good excuse to not have to talk or anything and just keep making more granny smack, and like I just reread what I've written here and, like, I think that I better stop now, like, it's just not a healthy sign that this whole post is like one sentence, I'll, like, well, get back to you guys when I've slept this one off, I guess it's just NOT a good idea to smack and blog, OH, like, did I mention that the new granny squares are not squares at all but are HEXAGONS!? Oh my god...

Monday, February 15, 2010

Doro What?

There's a saying in Iceland that goes like this, "necessity teaches the naked woman to spin". Of course in English we have our own "necessity is the mother of invention". I prefer the Icelandic version.

At the ripe old age of 40, I'm learning to cook, and it ain't because I've discovered its joy. It's necessity. 100% pure necessity.

So, like, I live here in the food capital of the world. Sing all the praises you want of Chinese, Mexican, french (please!), Thai, Japanese cuisine but they just do not compare to Italian. Of course I mean in that overall you're-on-a-deserted-island-and-you-can-only-pick-one-type-of-food kind of way. If there was a food Olympics Italy would be like the USA is in, well, the regular Olympics. "The gold medal in cheese goes to Italy" "The gold medal in appetizers goes to Italy" "Synchronized plates...Italy" "Green vegetables on the side...Italy" "First courses...Italy sweeps!"

This is precisely why I'm learning to cook ... Ethiopian food. Yes, I might be the only woman EVER to move to Italy and learn to cook Indian, Mexican, Chinese, Thai, Ethiopian, Bangladeshi, ANYTHING but Italian (and French, but that's a personal preference - French food sucks). It's necessity, my friends.

Here's the thing. Italians KNOW that they have the best food in the world. It's just fact, so they don't bother with anything else. Ok, here and there in the bigger cities you can find a Chinese restaurant. And a number of the Chinese places now serve Japanese dishes (perhaps they think we don't know the difference...most of us probably don't). Once we found a Mexican restaurant but when David ordered chili rellenos and got a plate of lasagna we gave up.

As it happens, I too think that Italian food is the best in the world. But, the thing is, I'm not on a deserted island (although it may frequently sound as if I am, particularly when I compare myself to Gilligan). I want some choices, a little variety goes a long way.

So, initially, that friend of mine Necessity pushed me toward Mexican. I can now whip up some fajitas like nobody business and I don't even use a seasoning packet. I'll repeat - NECESSITY. If I could buy a seasoning packet I would have done thereby avoiding the NEED to learn to do it without. And, heck, that was so easy I decided to branch out! Ethiopian - Doro Wot! So tasty and so simple. Today I borrowed a Thai cookbook from my Swiss friend. The SKY is the limit! Really, I couldn't be more thrilled with my new skills unless of course my name was Björk Guðmundsdóttir and I'd just learned to ply on a spindle.

PS. Has anyone ever heard the Italian national anthem before this post? Yeah, me neither, and I've lived here for almost 10 years. That must be because there is no food Olypics just the regular ones and Italy, well...

Baseball isn't big here either.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Math

5 days [couch bound with stomach flu]

+ 7 days [alone on the mountain]

+ 3 days [couch bound with head cold]

+ 2 days [house bound by snow]


3.25[afghans of granny smack]*

+ 1[totally awesome mini snowfella]

*I've employed a bit of poetic license in using the word "afghan"...lap warmer would be a bit more literal...unless you are a totally awesome mini snowfella, in which case, the dimensions of said granny smacks are very afghan-ish.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Happy Friday.

It rained today in Maberga.

Sometimes rain is just awesome.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Ya know how your mom always told you (or maybe tells you), "be sure to wear clean underwear in case you're in an accident"?

Yeah, well, I found its Italian corollary today - what Italian moms tell their kids (probably just their daughters): "when you're sick, make sure that the floor is swept, all the dishes are done, the counters are wiped off, your doggie couch covers have been shaken, you've burned incense or baked a pie or sprayed air freshener, that you have snacks available, that you're wearing clean clothes that don't look like pj's even if they are, and have brushed your teeth FOR WHEN the neighbors visit."

Because they will visit.

I know this about my Italian friends now so I do what I can to NOT let them know if I've been taken ill. This week, we were having Augusto and Lina over for dinner on Wednesday but had to cancel because it's hard to entertain when your head is lying either on a pillow or the toilet seat. So obviously, they knew.

Lina visited this afternoon to check on me and bring me some of the french coffee that I like so much (it's lighter than Italian espresso and therefore nicer in the french press - french coffee, french press, it makes sense). I just think that's so darn nice ... and for me, today...intensely embarrassing.

Mom, you would have been proud of me...if I'd been in an accident.