Monday, October 02, 2006

Transported to a dusty bar

Chirst. I’m in danger of turning into a HFW myself here, spending as I have my new Monday off making stock. It was a pleasant day, in between abusing the youngest in some way or other, putting the plinth on the bottom of my UNICS and keeping watch over the bubbling cauldron. A kipper for breakfast and, eventually, three fillets of herring rolled in oatmeal with a light leafy salad dressed in mutarde de meaux and lots of butter and lemon.

The combination of the sweet rustic dressing and the buttery oats transported me to a quiet wooden tabled bar in the mid afternoon light with a glass of slightly cold ale. I ate most of it with my fingers, marvelling at the simplicity of the meal as I gently squeezed the toasted oat shell into the firm grey and purple flesh between my thumb and forefinger. It could have been 3000 years ago, somewhere in the Highlands. Minus the springy poly-tunnel lettuce of course. But no need. A meal in one, that. You might get a couple of sprigs of parsley in kitchen window from time to time.

In preparing the fish I also had to source an egg last minute, ending up next door at the Poles’. They were happy to show their neighbourly generosity and, once I’d faltered for 20 seconds pathetically over my attempt at saying “jajko”, proudly got all their eggs out for me to see. Two trays of them, dozens of eggs. Lots of plastic. Simple design. The lowest form of animal protein possible, the battery of the batteries: Tesco value eggs, by the 2 dozen by the looks of it. It was the colour of that coconut liqueur stuff you drink at Dutch weddings. Foul, so to speak.

Time is running out every day, there is never enough of it. But I am relishing it. I am thinking about drink a lot, this warm-up cold-spell triggering this that and the other. But I can keep on track here. The gear I need to address though. It is going exactly the same way as alcohol now. I get edgy when I am about to run out and then, after a morning of convincing myself that I will face enjoy the hardship of going without for a few days, get a batch in and smoke it harder and until I am fucked on it every night.

I mean, I am going a fiver’s worth of the best green you can buy most nights. A couple of full pipes, to myself. And I am getting immune to it, like I was with drink. Unable to actually reach that euphoric state that used to be the motivating factor, but unable not to have the necessaries to try every single night, and in reality spending all my home-life in a bubble.

But there is no doubt I am a better father and husband with it at the moment. I am telling myself it is because I am going through a bad patch with the drink, but it’s totally fucking separate. It’s the fuck I like, getting fucked. It doesn’t matter a fuck what it is. Or how I get there. It’s just getting away from it. I hope there is nothing in my current life that I am trying to blot out, like the nightmare of having young children or unconscious doubts about my marriage.

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