Who’s afraid of reading Virginia Woolf?

Beast: What do you think is the most-bought but least-read book in all of history?

Foodie: [Silence]

Beast: I bet it’s Gödel, Escher, Bach.

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Checking in, and checking out

Walking to an undisclosed location on a recent Friday evening to celebrate our 13th anniversary:

Foodie: I love the light out right now, and the way the snow has just sort of settled on the tree branches. It looks like a Bruegel landscape.

Beast: For fuck’s sake.

Foodie: What?

Beast: I didn’t know I’d be spending the night with Wordsworth.

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Risotto and resolutions

On a recent week night:

Foodie: What smells so good?

Beast: I’m making risotto for dinner. But I haven’t even started it yet. You’re probably smelling the chicken stock, which I made from scratch, heating up.

Foodie: What kind of risotto are you making?

Beast: Obviously Milanese. But I’m using chicken stock instead of beef and I’m adding peas.

Foodie: So not Milanese then. Can you help me get my coat off?

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Here’s to ‘Peter’s Friends’ and more dinner parties

Sometimes I imagine how it would feel to discover an episode of, say, Sex and the City, that I’ve never watched before.

Now I don’t have to because a couple of days ago I learned of a Kenneth Branagh-directed movie co-starring Emma Thompson that I’d never heard of and let me tell you, it felt great.

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Decking the halls, and a trip home on the 501

Yesterday was the first official day of my Christmas vacation. I was so excited that I bolted awake at 7:30 a.m.

I baked the cookies: the usual gingerbreads, shortbreads, and snickerdoodles, and, thanks to a recipe from a friend at work whose mother in law is Greek, some kourabiedes.

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Black Friday brain and red bedsheets

Beast: Great news. The blood stains came out of the sheets. They are washed and the bed is made.

Foodie: This is maybe the most romantic thing you’ve ever done for me.

Beast: But the whole process  got me thinking…

Foodie: Go on.

Beast: Maybe it’s time you switched to pads.

Foodie: [Silence]

Beast: At least during the night. You aren’t a 16-year-old girl anymore!

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Part III: Southern Heraklion in sixth gear, baby

We rented some form of Suzuki SUV for our 10 days in Crete because we needed something with a higher-than-usual carriage for driving on dirt roads. The Beast did most of that driving, which was often very terrifying. I did the rest, which wasn’t a walk in the park. Crete’s interior is filled with mountains, which means multiple switch backs. I’d like to think I became very good at shifting up and down these hairpin turns. There was one moment, however, when I may have gotten carried away. The Beast told me to veer to the left but instead I veered to the right and yelled “SIXTH GEAR, BABY!” just as I shifted into said gear and burned fucking rubber up the hill. Five minutes later, after I made a U-turn on the hill on a road as wide as a credit card, we had a good laugh about that.

And it’s also a really suitable motto for our three days and four nights in southern Heraklion, which is still fairly untouched by tourism. We really hit our groove, packing our days full of hikes, archaeological sites, caves, churches, and swims. From Chania we drove just over three hours to our the south of Heraklion. The drive alone, through endless olive groves on the slopes of Mount Ida, was breathtaking. We made one pit stop at Eleftherna, a Doric Greek site (900 B.C.) which made it practically new compared to all the Minoan ones (circa 2000-1500 B.C.) They’ve just built an incredible museum to house the archaeological finds. (Again, my favourite sort: only one hour to thoughtfully visit!) The real find here was a Geometric grave  that sounds exactly as one described in The Iliad: the funeral pyre of Patrocles including Achilles’ HUMAN SACRIFICE of prisoners of war! Afterwards, we had lunch with a view of the ruins at “Snack Bar Tavern Anatoli”.

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