My beloved and I love Fridays. It’s a tea and crumpets kinda day, at least this time of year when we are rather homebound. Our health restrictions and sorry symptoms demand such. We have grown to relish the stillness from being surrounded by woods of ancient pines. And never take for granted a precious perk of retirement.
Jon might have a vanilla mini-cupcake and Vernor’s Ginger Ale. I might have a frosted, puffy, and cake-ish cookie with my trademark “Uber” Iced Coffee, Jon’s special Java formula and preparation.
The confections would be carefully selected from Target’s bakery specials. The libations are a manifestation of both long-term habits and what our health regimens might strongly dictate.
The humorous part of the preparation deals with our opposing treatment of produce. In this case, that would suggest the season’s true booty: ripe and sweet cucumbers and tomatoes. We vary in how they are sliced and dressed:
Missourian Jon doesn’t both to skin cukes. He then simply slices them into wafers. He then fetches a chilled pomme de terre and slices “any which way.”
As a Southerner by default, I peel the tender cucumbers and then score them from end to end. The end result is a tender flower with refreshing summer tastes and textures.
If one lives South of Mr Mason and Mr Dixon’s legacy, one stores all tomatoes at room temperature. That goes for the German variety or any of the strains that most counties claim proudly as their own.
Here, we have neighboring Johnston County tomatoes. The county in which Jon and I reside seems to, instead, be growing Liberal Democrats. Verily, Miss Vera. Fertilizer is everywhere, dear.
The shape of the tomatoes can be round slices, half slices, or the ever popular wedges. Consistency is the key for teatime propriety. Let’s just say that it hints of the grandest of Southernisms: restrained creativity and creative restraint.
The tricky aspect of Marklewood Low Tea involves the pusses. Henry holds back and waits patiently for a nibble of cheese or a cracker. He’s even been known to snatch a Saltine from Jon’s plate, cocksurely struts to the doorway, and savors the cracker.
We have tried to determine how he actually can nibble in spite of the brittleness. Like most of modern feline applications, it appears to be all about licking, licking, and licking.
So later today, on what will most likely be a sweltering gust into the weekend, my beloved and I will enjoy our time together on this crazy clock of ours.
After teatime, we will seamlessly ease into a mandatory Jeopardy fest and then the longstanding SciFi Friday. Jon will fetch a glass of Silk and perhaps fix a salad which he would prepare much differently than I. I would switch from coffee to iced tea and perhaps fix a salad … my way.
Conceptually our supper “snacks” will usually appear and taste quite differently. I guess it’s a Missouri/North Carolina kinda thing.
It’s 2am and Jon and I are almost safely cruising through Thursday’s denouement. Our lives may be askew, but it’s the communion of spirits that stays with us. That very teatime nourishes our weary souls just a little and delicately quenches Love’s thirst.
Cheerio, Gentle Readers. Keep that pinky raised with pride whilst thy sippeth!
(Image: “Tea With He and Me” by Ray Caesar, 2012.)