Sunday, 15 November 2015

So I ended up making myself some ceviche today instead of taking the one hour trip from the West of London to a Peruvian restaurant in Soho which tends to be my weekly excursion. The commute is getting old, it would be better if the portions for the main courses after a ceviche appetiser was worth the trip, but sadly I can't in all honesty say that it is. So yes after buying the fish yesterday, which again involved another long trek - boy do I hate living out in the sticks, I made my own ceviche and I have to admit it was delicious. It was all I could do to not eat it all in one sitting. Its been quite a struggle to leave any for tomorrow, especially when my hands smell of ginger, garlic and coriander - I wouldn't mind having a new aftershave that smelt that good. Of course that would probably make me hungry.

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Well thats another Summer in London gone! An initial five week temporary assignment at work turned into 3 - 4 months and just like that summer came and went and I'm like hey its September how come I never saw any of the Summer. Dates in the calender in June, July and August got lost in 15 hour days, crappy take away food and not enough sleep and before I knew it September slapped me in the face and all because someone who was supposedly having a life saving medical operation was talking complete bogus!

Do I not like selfish people at the moment!

Seriously need a holiday after all this. Mars looks good, maybe a one way trip would be best.

Actually I like this picture, it reminds me that I don't hate people. I do like to seeing people have fun. I need some fun in my life. 

Soapy bubbles anyone?

Listening to: Pedro Aznar - A Primera Vista

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Summer Time Eating

Its starting to feel like summer here, well the temperatures are rising anyway, even if the clouds like to remind you that this is London still. With summer I seem to get even more lazy with cooking. Ideally I'd walk out of work and pick up some food being prepared in the street but I'm seriously fed up with the choices here, Indian though good is expensive, Chinese is just blah, if I have any more fish n chips or burgers my heart will probably go into reject mode, and though the Turkish Kebabs here are decent i've had them way too often on a saturday night. Choices exhausted I had to get inventive. What was I missing out on? I hate shopping when I'm hungry and have no ideas. Especially at the overpriced shop that pretends to be a supermarket in these parts. Begin at the veg aisle and just start throwing shit into the hand basket.

3 Limes
Red Onions
3 Granny Smith Apples
3 Oranges

Add some Cayanne Chilli Powder
Some Salsa
Some Mince
Some Tortillas
and don't forget the Irn Bru

Now the hand basket is overflowing its time to pay for it, go home and find a use for this mixture.

Dinner was easy fried off the mince with the red onion and salsa, threw that in with the cherry tomatoes, coriander, radishes into a tortilla making some tacos that reminded me of many a cheap night on the streets of Salt Lake.

Dessert was much harder work. But infinitely worth the extra effort. I love pineapple but I hate cutting one, but this fruit salad I had in mind called for the sweetness of the pineapple. The pineapple cut into one inch chunks, together with the oranges and finer sliced apple on its own would have been just like any other boring fruit salad, tasty perhaps but probably not worth all the energy expended. This is where it started to get interesting. I took the red onion that I hadn't used in the tacos, Finely sliced it, took the jalapeno and finely sliced the hell out of that too, threw it with the rest of the fruit, giving it all a good shake. Added a little salt. Took the 2 and half limes I hadn't used on the tacos, and squeezed every last drop of lime juice out on to the fruit salad. Took a spoonful of the cayanne pepper and distributed it around the fruit so that each piece became dotted with the dark powder. Ah fuck it! I like me some heat. I added another spoonful. Now to taste. Holy shit !!! I could sell this. The sweetness of the fruit, the refreshing combination of the lime and corander, merge with the heat of the jalapeno and chilli powder and your mouth is having a party unsure what the fuck is going on but loving every bite. I ended up adding another couple of spoonfuls of chilli powder because I loved the feeling of my mouth being on fire whilst the juice of the fruit refreshed it with each bite so by the time I ate two bowls of fruit salad I was in need of a glass or two of Irn Bru. But then again I did sip up all the firery leftover juice once I cleared the bowl of fruit.

If I had the time I might have been tempted to get myself a little market stall and sell this - then again I hate cutting up pineapple, screw it - this is one fruit salad I'll be keep for myself.

Listening to: Creo En Ti - Ana Tijoux & Juanito Ayala

Thursday, 28 May 2015

I put it to you

Without You there is no Us. Without Us, I may be me but I am not the same Me.

We travelled and grew as allies together moving forward towards a destiny we couldn't have predicted coming together from different corners of the world, crossing oceans and continents to find a fate that seemed in hindsight so natural. Your smile adds an extra beat to my heart, your voice sings in my soul. My hands miss your body within. My skin warms to your touch. Irreplaceable is what you are to me. There is no other that makes me feel the way you do. I thought I could let you go because at the time its what you wanted but I wasn't listening to my own heart. In an instant I felt my destiny slipping away, a puff of smoke and it was gone. Life can be cruel. But life can also be beautiful. In that same instant I knew I needed courage and faith in time because I knew then I needed you like I needed oxygen. I love you for so many reasons, too many to mention, but perhaps its as simple as the fact that you complete me.

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Feeling A Little Melancholic

The day I fell in love I wanted to give the world, the moon, the sun, the sky, the sea. Give the gift of flight. I didn't need to be a hero to no one, but I did want to protect my love from dawn to dusk. Then when it all turned sour I realised I needed all that as much for me as for my love. Without the one I love being my focus I grew weak, lost my strength and became directionless. With love I was powerful, exceptional, without - ordinary, and weak, rudderless  - all my apparent strengths swept away in one wave. Missing half of my being, my strength, my shelter, my compass, hours pass and tick away and I am not whole. All I thought I wanted to give away, I wasn't giving any more than my love had already given me just by being the map that showed me the way. Love it makes us strong, it makes us weak, it makes us selfless, it makes us needy, complete and so damn complicated.

Listening to: Franklin - Lullaby

Thursday, 9 April 2015

As you can imagine getting the opportunity to visit Peru & Chile was something that I will cherish for well until I get Alzheimer's and the events of those two and half weeks get lost in forgotten memory banks. It was special for so many reasons, getting to reconcile with the wife was number one of course. Number two reason was because I have long harboured dreams of visiting South America going back to my early childhood when I visited a museum exhibition in Glasgow on the Americas. I've always been a history geek since the days I could read books and imagine what the past was like through the power of someone else's words. I developed an interest in Latin and South American history, less so the 500 native tribes of North America, I was more interested in The Aztez, Mayan and Incan history and culture. So with that interest of course I've always harboured dreams of visiting Machu Picchu, probably without any real hope of actually doing so.

So to visit Peru and to take in the sight of Machu Picchu first hand was something I can't possibly describe. It was in so many ways the perfect trip filled with experiences that will long live in the memory. We got to take in one of the world's greatest sights, experience some amazing food, and well to be honest some bad food too. Maybe just one regret though - that time, and money didn't give us the opportunity to take in the music of Peru and Chile like I would have liked. I really thought we would have had the opportunity to enjoy some cumbia music in Peru but we spent so much time travelling during the day that we probably didn't make the most of the Cusco scene where there would have been more opportunity to do so. Had we arrived in Chile the previous week, or been able to stay for a few extra days we would have had the opportunity to enjoy Banda Conmocion, a band that both the wife and I would love to see live. In truth there is so many good bands in Chile that I would have loved to have seen – Illapu, Sol y lluvia, Americo to name but a few. But oh well, when you go on a trip that leaves you exhausted and stimulated to the point you don't have the energy for everything you wanted to do then that's a freaking good trip. 1 trip, 2 countries, 8 flights, 18 days, countless experiences, few regrets, 1 reconciliation, unmeasurable miles walked (a few more than was necessary thanks iphone gps), a lot to live up to when we do Scotland in 6 months or so.

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Life it gives, it takes, and it can make fools of us all. Its all a lesson, the ups, the downs, a rollercoaster where you cannot predict the twists and turns but when you are lucky you have someone sitting there right there next to you, holding on for the ride. The path of life has no clear set of directions, no one can produce a map, no guidebook exists, the destination is unclear until it unfolds before us. The joy, the pain, the warmth, the cold, moments of happiness, sadness, confidence, fear, are all temporary, none of it is predestined. Life just happens. Its not out there to get us. Its not out there to give us something good, or something bad, its not out there to reward us for being good people, or to test us because we have the strength to cope with the challenge. Life is water, its air, its the power of the sun. If it came in a bottle, it wouldn't come with a direction sheet but it would come with a warning, a list of possible side effects – contents inside will cause rippling. The truth is I don't know all that much about life, I certainly don't have all the answers, mistakes - I've made a few, I'm just trying to learn to make fewer, but I know the biggest mistake I made was not fighting harder to keep you in it. Life was good before I met you, but it was greater with you in it. Loving you made a better man of me. Not a perfect man, not one with all the answers but nonetheless a better man. The highs were higher, lows still existed but hey thats life. Afterwards though when we let what we had slip away, a numbness took hold. Where life was good before you existed, in your absense there was an emptiness, a hole not so easily filled. I've made plenty of mistakes in this thing called life, no doubt I'll make a few more, but the biggest mistake will always be allowing us both to walk away from each other, allowing that garden to wither, the hope, the dreams, the strength that came in the package of the two of us was so much more important than the challenges that we faced.

Saturday, 28 March 2015

When not in Gotham ....

... Batman hides in plain sight in  - Peru, in a simpler type of vehicle.

Chile 101 - 1


Fruitful Experiences!

Sometimes in life, life throws you lemons and something great turns sour but just occasionally you get a second chance to make lemonade from it. It may well come with a bittersweet aftertaste when just after 2 weeks its over but for that time it does taste delicious.

Despite the word imagery when the wife and I reunited in Peru and Chile for 18 days we did not make or have any lemonade, but we did experience some pretty amazing fruit juice, and a lot more besides.

Although we may forever stay away from Papaya! And the Cuy! And the Peruvan Cheese - it doesn't go on pizza! Don't do it people!