Tuesday, July 28, 2009


OK, so all my thinking I was going to have a lot of time in these motels and could write every night and all like that? Hmph! Like THAT could happen. Now, there ARE pictures, lots - I'm emptying the camera every day to keep up, but as I said, I can't figure out how to get the software that I have at home, and so can't seem to edit them (as in, make them the right size, crop, &c - I have a good program on Daisy but nothing here....)

THEREFORE! No pictures here, I'll do some kind o' album affair when I get home. For now - just the synopsis-slash-story.

Any idea how FRUSTRATI NG it is to not be able to post the pictures with this??? I am SO chewing on my knuckes!

Had a nice enough time in Minot. A trip to the library scoredmy parents' address in 1938, probably their first home there - and the home they lived in in 1945, which meant MY first home too. (I just thought of that!) We also went to the newspaper. Although none of the old-timers who knew my father or had worked with him was still there, when we said I was DaleHarriet GOLDISH, the WHOLE STAFF came running out to meet the daughter of SIDNEY S. GOLDISH!!

OK. I made that up. It was more like pleasant smiles and nods - but Mr Dearling thought to ask if they had anything like maybe a coffee cup reading "Minot Daily News" and the Pleasant Young Lady found the publicity guy who showered us with pens, keychains, two datebooks with "Minot Daily News" in gold on the covers (ok, so they were for 2009; they're MEMENTOS, people, they're FINE). He also gave us one of those neat small fleece blankets, with "Minot Daily News" embroidered on the corner! No one else in Madison has one of those! (Or....hmmm - if you do, drop me a line, eh?)

After all that excitement, we decided to head out toward Glendive, MT, where we had reservations for the night. Mr Dearling realized he'd forgotten his eyeshade, so we stopped at a Walmart to find one. And came out with:

A peach; a pear; a tube of my favorite dental adhesive (see, it has this mint....nevermind); a pair of Susan Bates #8 long single-points (OK, so I started the Calorimetry on too-short needles, you wanna make something of it?); THREE balls of "Peaches & Cream" (figured I might knit up a couple dishrags if I got tired of the other stuff); half-a-dozen chicken tenders; half-a-pound of potato wedges (Mr Dearling LOVES him some Walmart wedges); --- oh, and a SLEEP MASK! HAH, you thought I was gonna say we forgot that, didn't you? Well we DID-unt.

We found our Super-8 in Glendive. It didn't look too promising, there was a video rental in the lobby....but the good-natured clerk assured me that the wifi was really good - the router was in the ceiling of the first floor, just under the floor of OUR ROOM (which was the best one in the whole place)and besides that, "the bunch of seismologists just down the hall have all KIND o' computer stuff, and they haven't complained even ONCE!" We found our digs, very adequate, I turned on ol'Hermione and.....YES! FABULOUS innerwebs connection. Faith restored. -- and last blog entry achieved.

Unremarkable breakfast ("continental breakfast" can mean anything from storebought dry doughnuts to make-your-own waffles - this was the former)and we continued on toward Livingston, about six hours.

We ARE in cow country - beautiful rolling hills a-crawl (a-graze?) with beefycows, many with calvies at their sides. Next stop, Billings, and we decide to stop at the Visitors' Center to get the lay of the land (as in, "any yarn shops around here?")

There was a lovely big statue, a cowboy on horseback and two longhorns...nothing for it but a photo opportunity (watch this space). We had the good luck to visit the Visitors'Center on Doughnut Day! The very nice fellow at the desk gave us all sorts of information -- INCLUDING the address of a yarn shop!

AS I don't want any single post to be too long, (and I'm feeling rather cliff-hangerish) I'm closing here and will pick up the adventure after knittin' a few rows. After all, this IS at least theoretically a knittin' blog, and I feel obligated to pick up the needles now and then.

On the needles: a Calorimetry, a sock, the day-glo toque {{blink blink}}and a dishcloth.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Journey Begins -- and continues!

NOTE: Remember I said I'd be bloggin' from the road? Well - I did. Tuesday night we stayed at a Super 8, which as we all know ALL have "free high-speed internet". And it did, but the signal was "low" and "very low" and dicey. Still, I carried on. I wrote a wonderful, clever, humorous, insightful and entertaining blog. Easily the best blog I've ever written; perhaps the best that ANYone has ever written.

And it disappeared. Gone. PPFFFTTT!! I didn't believe it - I rebooted, checked, rebooted again, checked again, and OH YES, ladeeeeez and gennulmens, there was the title (lawsy it was clever...can't bring it to mind just here, but do take my word for it) and the first line. Only. Sooooo....this is the first of my travelblogs. Again. (I don't delude myself, I'll never again attain that original brilliance - just {{sniff}} carry on.

Although this has NEVER happened before, we got out of our Outreach program Tuesday a little later than we'd intended. {koff koff} We hurried home to feed the cats before leaving town - ignore the verklempt lady behind the curtain - and headed out. First stop: REI to return some shoes (Mr Dearling) and then a quick run into Target for the monthly Rx refill (me). THEN we were actually On Our Way. EN ROUTE. Travellin'.

We drove to the Twin Cities where we stayed overnight with my darlin' sister-in-law, and Wednesday morning, we turned our noses west and headed out. Oh....I discovered that I had apparently forgotten my cordless mouse which I much enjoy, so before leaving St Paul we stopped at Target (there're lots of them there) and I got a wonderful new small mouse for Hermione with my gift card from the last birthday.

NOTE: I actually DID manage to sort, pack, find patterns, find needles, pack, remember clean underwear, find yarns and highlighters and so on -- although I did seem to pass over the mouse. Nevermind.

There was scenery-admiring, dozing and knitting happening on my side of the car and driving happening on Mr Dearling's side of the car. We got to Moorehead, MN and stopped for lunch at a Burger King. Mr Dearling hoped they had the same "Double Whopper for $1.39" special we had to home, but they did not. So he appeased himself with two "Whopper-Junior-for-a-Dollarses" and for MY part, I had a pair of "burger shots". These would be teetiny hamburgers of the approximate dimensions of the White Castles in days of yore. We used to say "they hide the patty under the pickle". Doesn't matter, the teetiny burgers were tasty, and with the rather superior fries, were a fine meal.

NOTE: This is NOT a food critic blog; however it may appear to be on acccount of I sometimes obsess think about food and eateries and so on, and I have been known to comment that an event can succeed or fail, depending entirely on the nosh.

Our first Planned Destination was the Red River Zoo in Fargo, NorthDakota. That was my fault: I showed Mr Dearling pictures on line of newborn triplet RED PANDAS at that zoo. Those are his favorite cutest-ever animals; nothing for it, being as we were going to be in the area ("area" in this case being "North Dakota") we went there.

Well - there WERE triplet Red Pandas...but they're not going to be on exhibit until the end of August. HOWEVER! The trip was way worth it anyway because they have all kind o' unusual and rare and endangered animals there and they are a link in this worldwide chain of zoos who have breeding programs to try to prevent the entirely-disapearingness of some of these animals. Also, they had a married pair of peafowl strutting around on the paths amongst the people....and they had a tiny peewee peachick with them.

NOTE: there ARE pictures; however, I can't figure out how come I can't "edit" them to fix their size, brightness &c on Hermione so will have to do something of an albumoid deal when I get home.

We then continued toward Minot, and saw a sign indicating two towns coming up: WHEATland and CHAFFee. How cool is that?

By the way.....Interesting Observation: the speed limit in North Dakota on the highway is 75 mph !! This means that one can actually - and legally - drive about 80-85 mph. We did notice, though, that at speeds higher than THAT, we began hearing this really weird noise......coming from the passenger seat.

NOTE: it is difficult driving west in the late afternoon, especially when there is a haze of tiny bugs beset by bad karma, and some pollen-oid matter. Mr Dearling, who Prepares for Contingencies, stopped and cleaned off the windscreen with Windex.

Upon arriving in Minot we had the good fortune of finding ourselves right next to the railroad tracks at the depot just as the Empire Builder was pulling out for its journey west. It was really exciting seeing the train, and because there were a few lights on in the people cars (as opposed to cattle cars) I could see in, where folks both upstairs and down were settling in for their trip. I would LOVE to take a train trip across country, even half-way, and be able to sleep in a pullman car and eat in the dining car, &c. I hear, however, that it is FRIGHTFULLY spendy, but a girl can dream.

Also...car travel with one's Best Beloved (who does all the driving while one knits, reads, writes, &c, see above) is a very fine way to travel indeed.

As the hour is now late (although not as late as it used to be, being as we're now in Mountain Time) I will leave the Minot Experience to relate tomorrow evening (allowing as how the place we're staying THERE....for the three days around the wedding....says it has GOOD WiFi in the attractive lobby, which will suit me (and Hermione) just fine.

So ends this day's travel. (NOTE: the free WiFi at this Super 8 is.....SUPER! And it's in Glendive, MT, if you happen to be passing this way.)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Preparing for Panic Mode...

It is Time. Officially. Monday-before-we-leave-on-Tuesday-evening. Which means that I should be efficiently starting to pack the things I'll need for about twelve days' journey away from home. I believe I may have commented before, how I feel about travelling. My sister was in the womb before me (she's six years older) and she took ALL the Wanderlust Genes. She and her husband have lived in Paris and Florence, have visited Africa and India and in South America. It's been perfect as they've been able to afford it - and my brother-in-law is an accomplished photographer, so he's taken advantage of their perambulations.

I, on the other hand, have a Taproot. I like my little nest. My Home. I like being able to get up in the middle of the night, go into the kitchen and grab a nosh out of the fridge, meander to the bathroom petting cats on the way and then going back to bed -- all without opening my eyes.

This is not to say that I dislike travel. We've been some wonderful places, Mr Dearling and I and I relish each and every day and experience. But it's finite. I think the longest time I can be from home is probably three weeks. As we turned onto our street after our amazing three-week trip to Nova Scotia (and I wouldn't have missed an instant of it) I said, "Isn't it grand, coming back to our own digs?" and HE said "I could've gone right past Seminole and kept going."

That was a Learning Moment - one which has not affected our relationship one jot. Sometimes he goes off on a walkabout (or more accurately "motorcycle-about" or "drive-about") for a few days or a couple of weeks. While he's gone, he throws his sleeping bag down where he is, sometimes not even bothering with a tent. He lives on peanut butter or cheese sandwiches and he hikes and walks -- sometimes skis -- and has delicious and halcyon days.

For my part, while he's gone, I keep odd hours, spend most of the time on the couch watching endless teevee and eating things he's not fond of: shrimp, frozen dinners, stuff like that. And I read, and knit, and doze with the cats....in short, I have delicious and halcyon days.

But when things like this come up, I'm excited. The purpose of this jaunt is because we've been honored with an invitation to the wedding of the darling daughter of dear friends. She's a very outdoorsy girl, marrying an equally-outdoorsy guy, amidst the beauty of the mountains which they both adore. They live there, too, for quite some time, so it's also THEIR mountains. The bride asked if I'd write a Wedding Prayer - they're having pretty much a secular ceremony, but asked seven friends to write prayers for them. (Where there is love, the ceremony is spiritual anyway -- intimately spiritual.)

So we're leaving tomorrow after a museum program. And I'm packing. Now, as a largely non-travelling type, I'm inexperienced here. But I'm taking a pair of sweatpants in case I NEED something of a pant-y type. And I'm taking four dresses (plus the one I'll wear) and three aprons, as that's my Daily Dress (a couple of my dresses will serve nicely for the mountain wedding, too). I've made lists: pills, dental stuff, earrings, brush/comb and so forth. I'm pretty confident about all that.

BUT!! See, this is a GRAND knitterly opportunity. Mr Dearling loves to drive, and he had a very fine GPS unit. It's between his ears. He reads maps like some people read novels. Which means, all the windshield time is KNITTING TIME!!

So the TRICKY PACKING will be determining 1) what yarns, needles and projects to take; which (photocopied) patterns to tuck in; being sure all necessary tools are present. 2) All current books being read, some for study and some for pleasure -- and which magazines as well....and of course the Guidebook of Yarn Shops all over the country. (Mr Dearling is not averse to my shouting "OVER THERE!! IT SAYS 'YARN'!!") 3) Writing tools. I have stories in the hopper, I have the beginnings of a novel which my Writers' Group said MUST BE DONE. SO that means notebooks, sticky notes, highlighters, pencils....and hard copies of some WIPs.

I've gotten a slightly-bigger notebook for writing things down outside of my blogosphere book, too. And of course.....of COURSE!!...I'm taking Hermione. I thought about taking Daisy, too, but Hermione's the man for the job,and Lovely Daughter can take Daisy while we're gone.

NOTE: In case you missed earlier posts: Daisy is my beloved Dell laptop, large of screen and wondrous. I love her. She is my cherished one. Aaah, but then there's Hermione. She's a teetiny netbook, notebook -- itty bitty laptop. Mr Dearling tells me that she's as gutsy as Daisy, though. She has USB ports but no disk drives or anything, so of course I'll be bringing Ygraine. Ygraine's the flashdrive. In fact, I have a new flashdrive JUST for my fiction, my stories, my ideas....she'll be coming along too.

Which means, when I find myself in the presence of the Almighty WiFi, I'll be able to blog from the road, keep up with e-mail, look in on Facebook and Twitter, and I won't miss my daily dose of Cute Overload (my first online check) and the LOLCats. And....these (and you MAUST DOINGK EET!): the Itty Bitty Kitties followed by Pitter-patting Baby Cats. You won't regret it - I start every day with these.

Why Dale-Harriet, whenever do you have time to BLOG??? (Ooops)

So what I'm saying is, in this the 21st century, I'll still have access to the electronic comforts of home. Admittedly, I may have to seek out a library or MacDonalds to get them, but there you are. We'll be staying in motels occasionally - certainly while we're at the wedding and festivities. But otherwise, we're going CAMPING ! Like, you know, MODERN normal ordinary human being camping!

In place of my canvas wedge with no floor and my deerskins and feather tick and candle lanterns (NOTE: I dearly love those, and enjoy our days spent in the 18th century) it's going to be LUXURIOUS to have a poptent with a floor and, you know, windows! With SCREENS! Sleeping bags. Battery lanterns. WEINIES!!

So let me reiterate. I need to pack for: Clothing and personal hygiene and stuff. Underwear. Socks. Petticoats. Brush and comb. That's one big suitcase.

And I need to pack for Knitting. One basket to keep up front with me with current projects, and one bag for yarn, extra patterns, extra needles, extra tools - and the Yarn Store guidebook (see above).

And Writing: blogosphere book, small travel journal, flashdrives, ideas notebook, pens, pencils, erasers, highlighters...those can be in the tote bag with the books for reading. It's time I begin browsing books about the Metis women in the Fur Trade, being as I'm slated to give a program about them in November. Now, that seems like months and MONTHS away, but I know how this sh** works; before I know it, it'll be day-after-next.

Then there's the music - a few tapes, a few CDs (I have an adapter for playing the portable CD player in the car which is Pre-CD-Players-in-Cars-Thenk-Yew.)

OK. The. Time. Has. Come.


Sunday, July 12, 2009

Art, Pastry, Fruit and Knitting.

I am in the Half-Hour. It's Sunday, you see....around here, we call that "Fosamax Sunday". Now, that's not a plug or product placement or anything, because the truth is that it's "Alendronate Sodium" Sunday. Admit it, doesn't have the same ring. But what that means is this: 1) I apparently have...or am teetering on the brink of...osteoporosis; 2) I therefore take a pill once a week to shore up me creaky bones; 3) When you take one of these, you must "remain in an upright position" for a half-hour.

Which makes me, unrepentant hippie passive-aggressive that I am, want to: 1) lie down; 2) stand on my head; 3) ask "WHY??" However, I am also an Old-and-Therefore-WISE old lady, so I will: 1) stay upright; 2) throw over the headstand anyway, as it would be: 2a) uncomfortable; 2b) undignified; {and I hear that cackling over there, NEVERMIND! } and 2c) whaddya, think I'm outta my mind? (Which question is RHETORICAL, Peanut Gallery.)

But wait, there's more. ALSO during the half-hour post-pill period, I cannot drink anything but water, nor eat ANYTHING. That includes the rest of my morning regimen of pills (think: I'm tempted to just toss the lot in a bowl with milk and sugar....) AND it includes....


These are delicate scrolls of pastry, Greek in origin, which are made by some arcane method - and then drizzled in a thin syrup of honey. The honey permeates the layers without making them soggy. When they're finished, the bakers (in this case, some nuns at a convent, I'm told) lean over and whisper "Cinnamon" over them. It's not so much a flavoring as a scent in the throat.

I learned about Diples as part of my college education. There was a place called The St. Clair Broiler (over on St. Clair Avenue, as it coincidentally happens) which served, along with decent burgers and the usual college chazerai - very large, perfect Diples. They were also open late, for the benefit of we Macalester scholars who were unencumbered by stuff like dating and so wandered over there from the "Libe" in an intellectually-superior knot for something to eat.

"So, Dale-Harriet, where then have you obtained another example of this ambrosia, all these long, vast, centuries months later?"

At the Art Fair on the Square! This is an annual event, huge as you can see. The weather was fine and we met another couple and strolled around together.

NOTE: Since I began writing, the half-hour has expired, I have taken my cereal-bowl of pills and.........eaten two of the diples. I will now return to the scheduled blogpost.

There were many fine things to see at the Art Fair: some beautiful, ethereal paintings (waaaaaaay to spendy for me) and some wonderful wooden bowls, artsy baskets -- one might say "the usual". We also trailed throught the Art Fair OFF the Square, sort of an adjunct show but only Wisconsin artists. The things are no less showy but are somewhat less spendy -- but I saw nothing to complement my Early Salvation Army - Mid-Student Housing decor, so we didn't buy anything. (I must say, though, the High School Pottery Group, displaying delicious bowls and cups and things made by students from all the schools in town - I'd have come away from that with something, had anything truly caught my fancy.)

As we wound up our stroll and were JUST about to walk down to The King of Falafel for a fine repast, I saw it: GREEK PASTRIES!! Trays and trays of all manner of diples, baklava, those things that look like shredded wheat but are filled with chopped walnuts and are positively DRENCHED in honey.....'scuse me, I have to go get a napkin.....OK, I'm back. ANYway, I bought some. Nine. Six diples, three of the shreddy-wheaty things. For the record, since ending my Half-Hour I have eaten two of each. Nevermind.

After you've spent a couple hours walking up and down and back and forth and examining Fine Art, it can sort of alter your perception of things. For example, I noticed this reflection of our beautiful capitol dome:

Or maybe it's just that all the artsy-fartsy vibes got to me -- but you know, I bet if I print this as an 8x10 on glossy paper and make up some clever caption in German, I can sell it NEXT year at the Fair! From what I saw, it should bring me about Eleventy-thirty hundred dollars. Hmmmmmm.

Some other things that have occupied me these last few days: BERRYING! Yes, since identifying my lovely berries as really-truly Black Raspberries I've been going out every day or so and plucking them as they ripen. Like regular rasps, you can tell they're ripe when you touch them and they fall into your hand. I didn't drop any, and I'm glad, because I'd have been down there amongst the thorns trying to find it. However, we have a few mosquitoes around here, and I was delighted when Mr Dearling provided me with a relic from his Outdoorsy Past:

OK, OK!! I'm not looking to win any aesthetic awards here! You may laugh and jest (in fact, if you're NOT laughing and jesting you're a more serious soul than I) but I have to tell you, the dorky thing works! I managed, this last time, to get my berries with both of my eyes OPEN the whole time. However.........I have to tell you, the sound of thousands of mosquitoes buzzing and buzzing around trying to get to you to suck out your blood and eye juice and spit and soul -- that's pretty unpleasant too. I've just e-mailed and rescinded my application for Chief Entymologist in the Rain Forests of Borneo. But at least I did emerge victorious, with THIS:

Now, to be truthful, this is ALL the berries I've gathered; I've been putting them in this bowl each day and keeping them in the fridge. But ladies and gentlemen, these berries' hours are numbered. SOME time today, Mr Dearling and I are going to have small bowls of rich French Vanilla ice cream, spangled with our very own organic Black Raspberries. I will write a proper Food Critic commentary on the experience in the next few days. I am frightful tickled with these, and with the canes, and I'm VERY grateful to whichever birds out there ate someone else's black raspberries and managed to hold it together until they got into MY back yard to.....eeeeeew. Nevermind. Suffice it to say, I'm glad Mother Nature gave'em to me, and I'll think about something other than Her methods. Thenk yew.

OK - I've managed to write a whole LONG post (that's what happens when I leave off for a few days) without once mentioning cats, sticks or books!! The books are going to have to wait for another day (but believe me, it's not for a dearth of material on either one) but I. HAVE. BEEN. KNITTING! I finished two Calorimetry head bands, a fine toque (replacing the goofy one I made before), and I have begun another requested toque:

Yes, ladies and gentlemens. You ARE seeng right. If your computer has "tru-tone" or some kinda thing that gives you the full and authentic color on your screen, I must apologize for failing to warn you. That IS a toque on the needles, it WILL be a perfectly-authentic (in design) French-Canadian toque of the voyageurs-wore-them variety. But NO! This is NOT a color which would probably have appeared in ANY 18th century palate. No....this toque is for a gentleman (a fellow-reenactor, true enough) who, recognizing a very decent style of cap useful in our Wisconsin winters, has asked for one, NOT for his reenacting, but for his time-honored Wisconsin tradition, The Autumn Deer Hunt.

I think the law states that if you're out there you must wear blaze orange ALL OVER; that's so that you can't be mistaken for a deer by even the drunkest, most inexperienced bleary-eyed hunter in the forest. (They're NOT from Wisconsin, by the way...hunters come here from far and wide because we have a veritable scourge of woods rats ....errrhm....a vigorous deer population. The females are so CUTE (rumor has it that the original drawing of Bambi's mother was taken from a Wisconsin doe) but there are NO (I repeat NO) blaze orange deer here or anywhere else. So the decision to have such a safety-conscious and warm head covering is not only wise but sensible and forward-thinking, and although I find I have an after-image for about three hours after knitting on this, it: 1) IS "knitting"; 2) is a laudable request; 3) is kinda fun in a perverse way; 4) may provide some comments when I take it to Late-Night Knit next week.

And in closing (you're on your own about the "books") I present to you Mistress Evangeline, Priestess of Bast, Grand Dame of the Household, Precious Feline Fuzzydaughter, looking her most snooty -- mildly-disapproving. Her mood improves in direct proportion to the number of Green Crunchies I am dropping into her bowl.

You're going to post this, aren't you?


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Road to Hell, and fruit!

Yes, we all know about "the road". But guess what, I figured it out! I've been trying to sort through my notes going back to my last post, so as to catch up with all good bits intact. As some of my favorite webbers say, "REDONKULOUS!" So rather than trying to catch up by writing about Things Past, I'm going to PICK UP instead, and pepper the conversation with recollections where applicable. Deal?

Identify the Mystic Berries. These appeared in my back yard, growing on thick stems which curve over and are armed with Very Serious Thornage. I took a few pictures, because these are not something I planted; I know they're NOT ordinary raspberries because I know what those leaves look like.

And it's NOT this. I'm figuring these berries were carried about in the craw (sounds better than the alternative) of some birds who were enjoying the chaotic jungle that I think of as "my natural garden", and were ultimately deposited, where they began to grow. I think I've seen them before, but I've pulled them out or broken them down. This year, however, my indolence ...erhhm...Busy Schedule has prevented my doing much in the back yard, and you can imagine my surprise when I found these berries!

This is what they looked like a few days later, "redding up" as they say. They look very much like ordinary raspberries, which happen to be a great favorite of mine -- but which I cannot bring myself to pay eleventyfour dollars an ounce for. HOWEVER! Owing to my indolence extreme busyness at the Museum (see above), I wasn't able to get out to look at them very often.

NOTE: In order to get the previous photographs, I had to move VERY fast, and only the fact that my clothing caught on the thorns prevented my being carried off in the clutches of an Oscenity of Mosquitos; laughingly called "The State Bird of Wisconsin" I am here to state that there is NOTHING humorous about them, and only the fact that our neighbors are vampires and had a few quarts of Type O (I think it's a Pepsi product) in their fridge... and the knowledge of transfusing ... prevented that last from being my Final Blog post.

UNDAUNTED, however, as I am never, ever daunted at my age, I went out last night to examine them again, and found this:

NOTE: I went out wearing sweatpants (it was in my own backyard, not a soul around to see me) and a hooded sweatshirt with the hood tied tightly around my neck. Did they attack my hands? NO they did not. Fortunately I managed to protect my face....mostly.....

Now, I found this entirely beautiful, and there were several clusters identical to this on the other curving, thorny arms of the plants. Mr Dearling had thought they might be thimbleberries; someone else suggested blackberries. I had no idea - oh, and did it occur to me to (duuuuuuhh) look them up ON LINE? It did not. Lay it at the feet of above-mentioned Busyness.

So what I did instead was go back inside for a bowl, and at great expense to life and blood, I gathered up the ones that were actually like this and therefore, I thought, probably ripe:

I found it interesting that the berries AROUND the central one were still red, but I'm guessing that they're just unripe and will darken. I brought in the eleven ripe berries that I found, and brought them in, where they look like this:
They DO look so edible, and there's some rhyme about white berries being dangerous but red or black being fine....with the exception of Deadly Nightshade, which has bright cherry red berries and are also known as Bella Donna, the poison of choice in Renaissance Italy.....nevermind.

I put them in a pretty ceramic bowl,and showed them to Mr Dearling to see if he might be able to recognize what they were.

NOTE: Mr Dearling was born in da Bronx. Grew up on Longk Islandt. And I'm asking him to identify a wild berry found growing in the wilds of the back yard. Plus - he's a boy. So of course, being a New York boy with all those man genes and a healthy sense of scientific curiosity.......

He ate one.

And of COURSE (you saw this coming) immediately clutched his throat, made hairball hacking noises and slumped against the counter. Unconvincing -- but what could I do? I read "Romeo and Juliet". I immediately popped one into my mouth too.

And thus arrived at the following verdict, since corroborated by examination of information on line, might I add :


They're in the fridge, waiting for some of their fellows to ripen, and then they have an appointment with a splash of cream. There won't be many of them, I think, but we'll each have a small bowl...and then I'll read up to see what I can do to guarantee their future health and welfare, and I'll mark them out for Protection and Further Care.

Unless we were wrong, in which case we might be dead before you finish reading this. Lovely Daughter gets the stash.