I really have had it with the German invasion. To listen to my current lady, who is from Munich, Germany is the perfect place to live, with Munich taking first prize for perfect city. Apparently there is no crime in Munich! (I know, I found this hard to believe, but was assured that it's true!) There are no social problems, no gangs, and no poor people!! Everyone is rich in Munich, so that's OK. (And even if there are poor people, they get a lot of help from the state.) There was no point in arguing or disagreeing with her, she was unstoppable. After this lecture over breakfast, I had a severe case of indigestion. And the fact that she could see nothing untoward in this diatribe was very worrying indeed.
Let me describe this woman: she is a very solid, heavy-set woman of 59-ish.
Her face is set in downward lines which still turn down even when she cracks a smile - which isn't very often. She has a large appetite and absolutely no dress sense. (Bitch!) So, middle-aged, self-satisfied, German woman with minimal sense of humour? That is until yesterday evening when my lovely, gay male friend called round unexpectedly just as I was cooking supper. I invited him to stay and eat with us, and was astonished by the change in my German lady. She became positively flirtatious, using body language I certainly hadn't seen before, and twisting the granite face into never-before-seen contortions, which I took to be simpering smiles. It was horrible. I wanted to tell her not to bother, but I don't think she had ever encountered a gay man before (they certainly don't exist in Munich!), so I let her get on with it. It was very funny, and my gay friend was enjoying it too - though for different reasons, I suspect. Anyway, she got quite pink with the effort, and my friend's laughter grew louder and more uncontrolled. It was a pity to break it up, really.
This morning, I finally finished making the ill-fated crab apple jelly, which is a gorgeous dark pink colour, and tastes very good. It was worth the effort. And this evening I came home from a visit to an old friend with pounds of damsons, apples and plums from her garden. Lovely. I'll have to get busy making jam and stuff again - this time I'll try not to get it all over the floor.