Wednesday, August 26, 2009

on having all your cake. and the trimmings.

" have one's cake and eat it too or simply have one's cake and eat it (sometimes eat one's cake and have it too) is the instance of an individual consuming, exhausting, taking advantage of or using up a particular thing and, then, after that thing is gone or no longer reasonably available, still attempting to benefit from or use it. It may also indicate having or wanting more than one can handle or deserve, or trying to have two incompatible things. It is a popular English idiomatic proverb or figure of speech and is most often used negatively. The proverb's meaning is similar to the phrases, "you can't have it both ways" and "you can't have the best of both worlds."..." wikipedia

golly. what a conundrum, eh? i can tell you that niamh happily had and ate all her cake. jake didn't get anything. not even a crumb.

these days i have a nagging sunday evening going back to boarding school feeling. only a few more days of lush free time before it's back to the chalk board. white board whatever. honestly. i love what i do. but oh the gruelling routine. the tired mornings. getting everyone out the door. strategic military planning. being the cheerleader. rauss rauss. the rigours of the clock...ticking. can't be late...why not, i say? wtf not?

the kind of life we've been leading has been more on the dreamy side...wake up whenever, pancakes and wild honey for breakers over lazy cups of coffee, a late mid morning ride, idle shopping, nattering with buddies at msumbi coffee shop, wild and woolie safaris to where the wild things are, time to simply stare out the window.

be warned: i hate these sort of rebukes to any of my laments:

well. everybody has to work. hmmm. nope. not true. there are a few filthy rich bastards out there who have never had to lift a finger. who don't know the meaning of work. i'm not saying it's a good thing. but WHO said it?

well. you can't have your cake and eat it too, you know. again. who says?

everything has a price. there are lots of fish in the sea. maybe. but who wants an eel which bites? tell me. who? let's be particular, shall we?

you can't always get what you want.

bollox, i say. utter bollox.
it's yours for the taking, said george's dad as he rode out to slay the dragon.
i reckon you can have your cake and eat all of it. and the cherry on top along with the perfectly iced complicatedly clad christmas fairy on the top of the tree. snap that little sugar sparklin' halo off. yum.

i always eat the trimmings - the little perfectly carved radishes, the tomatoes carved into flowers, carrots like chinese fans, the little forests of parsely clinging to snowy mountains of mashed potatoes, the zenned out spring onions, the zig zag drizzle of chocolate sauce prettily decorating the edge, chocolate leaves, cherries.

one has to be careful these days, though. some restaurants use Plastic decorations. is this only a tanzanian thing or does this happen anywhere else in the world? i bet it happens in china. i bet you.

which reminds me there is a chocolate cake in the kitchen waiting to be eaten. i shall fight the children fiercely for it until it's entirely mine. and i shall eat it. all. eventually.

i once saw a vast sun yellow canvas slashed with red and violet, with a sort of red riding hood wolf theme....and written underneath in black wobbly writing was:

" i'm not your mother. i'm the big bad wolf."

Kitchen Board: Thursday Night: End of August and All Things Unhampered by Time.

watch this board fill up once school starts. watch this space.

oh i am sad the holidays are finished.

so toodely toot, y'all, bisous X.X.X. wistful polaroidy ones x j


tam said...

come on pull yourself together. some people would be glad of the work you know. (no? not that either?)

Restaurants I have worked in? they re-use the trimmings. Recycled garnish, oh yeah. Never eat it. Destroy it with your fork so they can't put it on someone else's plate?

But the cake? Eat it, have it, keep it, and smuggle an extra piece out in your handbag wrapped in a serviette.

family affairs said...

I SO know how you feel - can you believe the holidays are nearly over? Not OK. Need longer. Can't face the routine. Love not getting dressed till lunchtime.

When I lived in HK I learnt how to make those little roses out of carrots. If I could remember how to do it I'd send you the instructions so that you could take your own trimmings to restaurants (and give some to Tam too) Lx

SafariB said...

Oh Janelle.. I just live for your posts :) :)

They put a smile on my dial every time!


Janelle said...

hey tam. no. no. not that either. that's one of the worst ones because it makes you feel even shitter. and re: the garnishes which are re used...wat nie dood maak nie, maak vet, no? munch j

oh lulu . man. dreading dreading...DREADING...those bladdy mornings...bah. xxx j

and b, THANKS DARLIN'! i love making people laugh and smile! thanks! xxx j

Val said...

i've never seen the point of having a cake and NOT eating it??
enjoy the last of the holiday before going forth to shape young minds :-)

Val said...

nother award for your cupboard x

Mud in the City said...

They re-use the parsley?? Nooooooooo! That's the best bit!

I am so full of envy for your summer hols that I'm afraid the sympathy for them ending is a little limited.... oh for riding, pancakes and wild things... dreamy!

Miranda said...

Get a grip Janelle

Nancy said...

So sorry you have to go back to work. If you lived here in the US, you wouldn't have to worry about that.

karen said...

Oh I know that Sunday boarding school feeling only too well! Plastic garnishes??? I think Botswana is very civilised in comparison! Enjoy your last days of freedom x

Elizabeth said...

Hee! Hee!
I retired three years ago after 20 years in the New York State System (English/English teacher)
I do not have to go back to school (neyne neyne pooh pooh)EVER again.
When I taught, July was like Saturday and August like Sunday.
Yes, that dreaded lurgy- sick- in- the- stomach feeling.
But I did love the students. I did love interacting with lots of people every day.
I did like the filthy lucre too.........
But it was grim too, I almost wanted to weep
and then I longed for snow days and prayed for hurricanes and three day weekends.
What big, gigantic babies we teachers are........woesr than the kids
imagine if one had a real American job where they only give you 2 weeks off in the whole , whole year.

Much love and looking forward to new installments of life in a much more exotic place than here.....

word verification:mirdene

Sounds as if Mirabelle and Dennis retired to a seaside community in England and put their house name on the gate.....

Lori ann said...

I know JUST how you feel.

enjoy your days what ever you do.xxoxooxoox

JaneVee said...

Hello Janelle
Anthea Rowan suggested I contact you as we are probably on our way to Arusha to live. My hubby is having an interview this coming week in Arusha and I'm hoping someone can help him out with getting shown around a bit and finding answers to questions like where to live, how to rent a house, what schools? (We have a ten and a twelve year old boy) medical aid, internet connections, where to shop, buy furniture or bring it with? ALl that stuff that makes up a life..... I enjoy your blog and ANthea's too... the way she strings words is melodic. I blog
Love to chat and if poss to arrange for the husband to speak to you and yours about Arusha? Let me know either way. ANy info truly welcome.
Many thanks
Jane van Velsen