I'm wondering if the Olympics has anything to do with my pleasures this week. I am thoroughly enjoying the Olympics....it's on our TV most of the day. We end the night viewing in bed.... watching past our bedtime...it's that exciting.....but other things come to mind that I do most everyday. I start some mornings with a cup of tea. Clearly a British custom. I like a clear mug shaped cup.I like to see the amber color and if I don't use a fragile teacup...this is the next best thing.
My tea of choice would be English Breakfast Tea. I have a problem with caffeine...so I have searched high and low for a caffeine free EBT. Twinings carries one that I like. During this hot summer, I have not started some mornings out with a hot drink...sticking to Ovaltine in a big glass.....cold. Ovaltine has been used in England since the early 1900's. I remember a warm cup of it in my childhood...when I couldn't get to sleep. My Grandma introduced me to it many years ago.
My tastes in books have always leaned toward the British. Especially Marcia Willett, Rosamunde Pilcher, and Maeve Binchy (who is Irish). I'm reading one right now by British author, Marcia Willett called A Week in Winter. I love descriptive books. This one fills the bill...lots of colorful description of cozy farmhouses...this one being next to a moor, cottage gardens, big dogs, comfortable clothing made of wool, afternoon tea...everything that can make this "woman's novel " pleasurable.
Stopping by a local restaurant that is so popular in our town....I saw scones on the shelf. I thought I would try one. My friend decided that she would have one too. Tea and scones....how very British. Well, the scone had been on the shelf too long...It was so dry and crumbly. This winter I will attempt to make a better scone. One that is filled with dried fruits and a drizzle of frosting on top.
I'm looking forward to the next PBS series Call the Midwife. It will start soon. The story comes from a book that was so popular in England. I ordered it just yesterday...got it for a few cents, used, from Amazon. I'll read it before the series starts.
The midwife series was more popular in England that Downton Abbey a very popular program here in the states. This has to have been one of my favorite series on PBS.I heard about this series late, so I missed out on the TV version. I watched the series on DVD.....captivating. I'm so looking forward to January when season 3 begins.
I can't forget the movies. I have so many favorite British movies, but my all time favorite book/movie has to be 84 Charing Cross Road. It's a movie about a correspondence during WW ll between an American woman and a British book store owner.We follow these two through the war and after...very entertaining. We are treated to life for the workers at the bookstore and the American woman while mayhem is going on all around them in England. I would recommend this book/movie to anyone who loves all things British.
I can't end this post without mentioning Wallace and Grommit. A set of videos, sent by my daughter, was such a hoot many years ago. They are in VHS and I still have them. Clever animation using clay. Quirky personalities...Wallace speaking and Grommit silent...only responding with his wry facial expressions. Wallace is a connoisseur of cheese. They get into all kinds of hilarious situations.