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Saturday, July 21, 2007

Sweet and Sour

A very long time ago, my mum would meet her chum [translation = British] for coffee in Dingles. [translation = a department store in the House of Fraser chain] Every Thursday morning after she had completed her shopping, there they would sit, to chat. Very occasionally, I would accompany her. During their chat I would nibble sugar lumps surreptitiously. [translation = delusions of invisibility were quite possibly a foreshadowing of my future existence]

Some time during the intervening years, I found that I lost my sweet tooth. Despite this loathing of all things sweet, I took up the hobby of sugar craft in my late thirties, at about the same time as multiples of very small people also entered my life. [translation = 3 babies in 34 months]
One day, a pal of mine came over to visit for coffee. [translation = American] She leant against the kitchen counter as I scrambled around my house chasing the aforementioned small people. Because I had a small galley kitchen, I was always at pains to keep the counters clutter free to increase the available working space. Behind her, at the back of the counter, I had a large collection of sugar creations in the process of being created, together with the tools necessary for such a hobby. [translation = very fiddling, time consuming hobby] Otherwise the space was clear which meant that the sugar animals stood out in stark relief against the cream coloured walls. She admired my handiwork and then asked how such delicate confectionaries remained in tact? How come they were not all smashed, eaten or stolen by the little sweetnesses in my life? [translation = the aforementioned children] I muttered something about the height of the counter and a certain lack of climbing skills but I knew that this wasn’t strictly true. [translation = my three year old daughter was a climber, early, but she understood that touching was not permitted]

Later, when she had left, I had a nano second to consider why it might be, that my sons were not interested in stealing the sugar animals that I have made so lovingly for a birthday cake? I hunted for my inner child that I carelessly mislaid a couple of centuries ago.

Did they hate sugar like me? That must be it! Somehow it did not ring true. I was unable to recall any children who ever refused sugar. Perhaps they thought they were real toys and not made of sugar? I tried to think of any child that would not be lured by the sight of a toy on the kitchen counter. I was unable to recall any children would be able to resist the temptation of a new toy either. Were they simply too short to see the back of the counter? I hunkered down on the floor and looked up at the counter to check. No, a perfect view of lots of colourful, adorable animals made of sugar. I lay on the floor instead just to check the view. I was unable to see the sugar animals which made me feel much better. I lay there for a little longer waiting for waves of relief to wash over me. Unfortunately my floorboards turned out to be wave free, so I stood up instead. [translation = also to avoid being trampled by the stampede of small feet en route to the dinosaur collection]

To this day, I still find it odd that despite my innate love of ‘whodunnits’ I failed to investigate this more fully. [translation = denial?]

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