Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Peaches, Piranhas and A Hot Day

Here in Seattle we are what might be best described as heat weenies. Above about 75, and most Seattleites start fanning their flushed faces and talking about how sweltering it is. I know. I used to snicker, too, and then somewhere around a decade of living here, at about 75 degrees, I would find myself surreptitiously fanning myself and trying to conceal it from people like my husband, who I had spent so much time making fun of. It’s supposed to get to 90 today. Which is not unbelievable, but is still respectable (right?). But, as I regularly point out to one of my sisters, who scoffs at the temperature whenever I mention it (she lives in Philadelphia, where they not only are usually hotter, the humidity makes the hot air feel all thick and heavy and miserable, even in the shade), we don’t have air conditioning. Apparently, only something like 7-8% of Seattle homes have it. We are not in that 7-8%.

The picture of the peach is included because although peach season is not quite in full swing, peaches arrived at Sosio's in Pike Place Market a week or two ago. Their peaches are almost always fantastic. We made a sublime peach ice cream with their peaches the other night (and, wuuv was felt by all for David Lebovitz).

It is an absolutely marvelous evening, after a day that either hit 90 or came just shy of it. In my house, however, the brick that has been warming in the sun all day is releasing its heat, making my home a stifling, miserable little hole. I gave the children cold baths before bed, turned their fan up to high and misted their sheets so that they were slightly damp and cool in the air from the fan. I will have what strawberry gelato that the Incredible Eating Nephew did not devour and head to bed, because tomorrow we are leaving for Fairburn Farm on Vancouver Island. My son and the Incredible Eating Nephew have both been looking forward to it- Mara Jernigan, who runs the inn and food portion of the farm, is an incredible cook who a couple of years ago made my son bruschetta that he still talks about. The Incredible Eating Nephew, when informed that we would go there, remarked that the food there was really good, which translated to someone who is not thirteen speaking about it, would be waxing on about the seasonality and taste and simplicity and loveliness for another twenty paragraphs. The Incredible Eating Nephew, right now, is a fella of few words.

I have to say, after foolishly walking home barefoot from my parents, I sincerely hope that escargot come nowhere near the menu this week. I used to love escargot. Every time I saw them on a menu, I ordered away. Living in the northwest, and getting a chance to see some truly absurdly sized slugs has really kind of made me much more squeamish about escargot. Because really, what is a slug but a snail without a shell? They’re both gastropods. And, for instance, when you step, barefoot on a slug, as I did this evening, you do not think: mmm, that would taste good with butter and garlic. No. You think: Ew! Ew! Yuck! Ew! Oh, nasty! Ew! Gastropods, for now, are out. Blech. Incidentally, the slime is surprisingly hard to get off.
The basil is pictured below because 1) slugs, those slimy blech-y... things (words that come to mind aren't for mom-read blogs) like to get at it and 2) I am hoping the heat will stop my basil from its resolute sulking.

There is no doubt though, that Curly is considerably less squeamish than I. We went to see the piranha feeding at the Woodland Park Zoo, in which little live trout are fed to the waiting piranhas. Curly and my boy were quite excited, and waited patiently for the keeper to come out and toss the little fish to their certain deaths. When the fish were finally dumped in, there was a substantial crowd, so it took me a minute to realize that the two voices chanting “Die! Die! Die! Wooooo! Die! Die! Die! Woooooo!” belonged to my children.

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