Monthly Archives: May 2012

A Sticky Situation


What is it about marmalade that no matter how hard I try, or how careful I am, I always ALWAYS end up with sticky fingers?

It doesn’t ALWAYS happen with jam or honey or any other spread…only marmalade.

I mean, I can sit in an armchair, or even in bed, munching on toast or biscuits or whatever and manage not to drop so much as a single crumb.  (Well, some of the time anyhow)  And the toast can be just about dripping with jam or honey…and yes, sure, sometimes my fingers will end up sticky…or honey dripping down my forearm…but not EVERY SINGLE TIME.

But with marmalade it’s guaranteed.  It’s not only once the icky sticky stuff is on the toast.  Just opening the jar…my fingers get sticky, then getting it out of the jar and onto the toast…fingers, hands, sometimes my toes as it falls off the knife.  I’ve even managed to end up with marmalade down my front simply by carrying the plate of toast & gooey stuff across the room. I haven’t actually tasted the stuff yet and I’ve washed my hands a dozen times in a futile effort to prevent it spreading to the rest of the kitchen.  And if I persuade someone else to put it on the toast for me, THEY end up having to wash their hands too…AND the kitchen bench-top.

Then of course, eating the toast and during that moment when there’s the slightest lapse of concentration,  glop! it jumps off the bread and onto my fingers.  Guaranteed!

Like I said, this doesn’t happen with any other type of spread…not every single time.  Only with marmalade.

Everyone else I’ve discussed this with has the same problem.  Most readily admit to always ending up with sticky marmalade fingers, hands, dressing-gowns, pyjamas, slippers.  Every occasion marmalade is on the menu, sure enough…sticky fingers!   Doesn’t matter how careful they are.

Some try to pretend it doesn’t happen to them, yet they avoid meeting your eye and you just KNOW they are hoping no one finds out they too are made to suffer the social faux pas of icky sticky fingers.  And if challenged they are sure to end up sneaking off to the bathroom hoping no one will notice.

So what is it about marmalade?  What gives it this unique very special ability to render anyone & everyone in close proximity sticky? 

Surely with the abundance of scientific studies floating around the planet…surely there must be at least one where the researchers,  have sought to solve the whys and wherefores of marmalade stickiness.  Surely there is, somewhere, a proper double blind study with the resulting peer-reviewed published paper with pages glued together with marmalade.  Surely.


Oh bugger…now I’ve got it in my hair!!!

From Aldi’s, I brought a jar of “English-Style Grapefruit Marmalade”

When I went to open it at home I read “Made in Germany” on the label.

For a Gerry try it’s not too bad…

… not too much sugar or added preservation … other than pectin …

not enough grapefruit tang…


almost but not quite English Marmalade…



Shabbat Shalom.


Shabbat Shalom.

Another cold wet drizzly day.

Another day lived in & close to warm bed.

The clouds are grey…light grey, dark grey, steel grey, all shades of greys…  drifting across the unseen sky.  So much water floating on the wind above our heads.

Looking across to the hills, they are swathed in grey, invisible.

The trees beyond the tennis courts are hazy, misty, the cloud is so low the buildings hidden.  An elven wood scene.

There is some bird song…indian minors mostly…with an occasional call from a wattlebird, lazily answered by a raven.

All hidden away in the trees.

Accenting the magic silence. 

I took some stale bread out to the compost. Tossed it across the ground.  Mr Magpie came down & selected a slice to take home to his kids.

I picked two red tomatoes in my almost vegie garden.

Almost because it’s a 7 foot square in the lawn…tomatoes grew themselves with just a little help from me…and I’ve planted a couple of short rows of onions…not sure what kind of onions…they came out of a pot someone else sowed.  They could have been leeks (but the leaves are wrong) or shallots (still possible) or spring onion (nope) or brown onions (maybe)

Anyhow, they’re shooting up very vigorous & by the end of winter we’ll enjoy cooking with them…well, Bob will cook…I’ll enjoy the eating.

And that’s my vegie patch…I’ve got lots of plans.

I started digging soon after moving into the house, Sept going on Oct.  At first I could only manage a couple of turns with fork & spade and had to stop…the sweat pouring off me in rivers…legs wobbly & barely able to hold me erect as I staggered to a seat…heart pounding…frustrating to be so unable.

But I was able…I took me a month to acheive a small 3 foot x 5  foot…and discovered the tomato seedlings self-planted from food scraps.

Then, of course, I looked at my handiwork.(& footwork).  It looked like a gravesite, just the right shape & length…if the neighbour disappeared this’d be the first place the coppers’d look, underneath my vegie patch…lol…the brown earth fresh turned, only the headstone missing…so I dug some more and soon had it looking more square…

A little bit of digging whenever I am able.  About once or twice a week, usually.   Even though it is exhausting & causes such pain and takes such a long time to finish.  I always feel better, the muscles & fibres (even damaged ones) feel stronger after a little work.  I can slowly dig over up til 6 spade fulls of ground in one session…too much work is counterproductive & I always pay the price of pushing myself to do 7 or 8. 

So that’s my vegie garden.  Tomatoes are just about finished…weather is becoming too cold for them…all through summer & autumn we’ve had a steady supply of a couple of fresh-picked tomatoes a day…more than enough for the two of us.

 Oniony-things are happily soaking up the rainfall.  The garden is in a good spot…so far I haven’t had to water…there is a steady seepage of water through the soil as it moves down the hill.

Thus it’s mostly a self-watered vegie patch.

We have had such rain here…all the rivers throughout Gippsland are in flood….tonight Lakes Entrance is expecting a King Tide and the lakes are already awash with floodwaters.

Sand bags everywhere

and lots of closed roads.

We’re okay here on this hillside.  The ground under the thick grass is like saturated sponge. Good to be high & in this case, dry.

Thank God.

The pictures of the Gippsland Floods 2012 are great. then follow the link.

It a huge area…100’s & 100’s of miles mountains, hills, valleys, rivers, creeks, all water flowing down into the overfull Lakes.

Gippsland Lakes was the world’s bigget fresh water lake system in the southern hemisphere…no longer fresh but salt water since the opening at Lakes Entrance was built.  Still is a huge area.  And there’s water everywhere throughout the riverine .

So much water and the skies are still full of dense heavy clouds. There’s more to come.

Week’s End.



It’s Friday and another wet, cold, rain falling in gentle flurries.

There is snow falling on Mt Baw Baw…and on other mountains in the High Country I should think. A pretty winter wonderland soon to be filled with skiers. Best viewed on a postcard.

I woke up feeling like I’d been run over by the proverbial Bondi Tram.  The bed’s been a torture rack.  How can a soft mattress be so hard?  Sore in a lot of places, a lot of sharp pain deep in my hips.  Had to get up and make the coffee.  Walking around the kitchen, slowly loosening up my spine & hips & shoulders too, stretching ever so carefully while the kettle boils…gritting against protesting tendons & muscles. Ouch, ouch ouch!

It takes about 2 hours to coax my body into moving without excess pain.  Slowly but surely I can flex most fibres with less & less pain.  Pain never goes away completely…ever…today though I’m okay without the morphine. At least, for a while yet.

I made it outside…wandered down to the compost heaps, circled the tomato bed & back…twice.  It may be a cold wet day but the view across to the Jeeralangs is wonderful, with thick black clouds roiling across the hills.   I took a couple of photos…and patted Puss the miniture panther, who came to say hello. The sun came out & warmed my face…the rest of me was well covered. 

Inside I washed a couple of dishes, managed to dry & put away the cutlery (mostly teaspoons).

another cuppa and back to bed…where this laptop is set up on an over-bed trolley…relaxing with Bob as he wakes up.

In a while, I’ll wander back to the kitchen…probably on my way through on one of my multiple trips to the loo…and check out the cupboards for lunch.  There’s fresh bread & some cold meat…or I could attack the strawberries.  Or both…depending how I feel.

Bob has just left for work.  He may be back later, about 6 or 7-ish…to eat …maybe tomato soup & cold lamb sangers…sounds good…then maybe around mid-night if it’s not too busy. He’s a taxi-driver, and a very good one (& I’m only a little bit biased).  He is also a good man…a rarity I treasure…Amazing to think we’ve been together 11 years. And still enjoying each others company…well…most of the time.  Bob works long long hours night & day shifts, most weekends.

More about him later………..maybe.


for sure…

It takes a fair while to type this…and lots of backspacing & other corrections.

I love typing…some people love playing pianos & other keyboards…but the qwerty keyboard is my thing.  I used to be able to type 65 to 70 wpm…my shorthand was never that fast…lol

I would type to music…keeping the rhythm, the keystrokes dancing to the beat.  Can’t do that now…not yet….one day I will relearn the skill…maybe.

One of the first signs of M.E. was suddenly mis-typing words…such as department…& it kept coming out on the paper as departmnet…time & time again I found myself having to backspace & correct…time & again I’d type it again…departmnet.  I later found this was due to the nerves in my right arm firing quicker than those in the left. d=left hand e = left hand p = right a=left r= left t= left m = right  e = left n = rightt t = left.

and the n right stroke kept hitting the key quicker the e left stroke.

At one stage the electrical activity was looked at by a neurologist…Nerve Conduction Test. 

I thoroughly do NOT recommend this one.  It was soooooo incredibly agonising painful…yet the neurologist, after affirming the slowed nerve conduction…lost interest.  He was too totally into Epilepsy…and M.E. wasn’t on his agenda.  Not his field of neurology.  Still at least he proved I didn’t have a pinched nerve in my carpal tunnel…though my GP actually asked for the nerve conduction test to investigate my neck & wasn’t done.  But there’s no way I’m volunteering again to be zapped & zapped with excruiating electrical pain.

There’s no cure anyway…so why bother.

Hmmm….yep. More later:


May Day…tho it’s night here/now…Dancing Around The Maypole!


The plumber came today & changed the old kitchen taps.  Mal put in new ceramic-seal taps; like the ones his mum has–and she has bad arthitic hands.  And they’re great…so easy, a light touch…no pressure on my hands/wrists, no hurties for hours & days afterusing them.

In the bathroom there’s new taps over the basin & new washers for the shower taps…yay at last!  no more agony from worndown “needs more pressure on already sore fingers”” washers.

I watched Dr Who tonight…the last in the series with Amy & Rory, where he marries RiverSong. Quite a powerful episode … thoroughly enjoyed, loved it that the theorectical physics WORKS  in the scenario…am looking forward to the next series … where the link to Time Lords & Gallafrey.  And if married then the Doctor & Melody Pond surely must produce a child…& how would a child time/space riders turn out???

It’s supposed to be raining & maybe sleeting according to the weatherperson…yet outside the moon is bright & the twinkling Southern Cross, so clear it’s just out of reach.\ .  it’s lovely out light light breeze but quite cold. Sometimes it’s good when the weatherman (& he is a man) gets it wrong….again.

later…it did rain… soft soaking Vic sleet in flurries but gently…and it’s cold. 

I spent most of the morning sleeping under blankets.

Lots of pain so it was a broken sleep but still feel better for it.

And that’s fine.

I ‘ve been up & about …not much tis true…patted the neighbour’s cat (we’re still making friends)

A lazy day.