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Dear Ramute

Dear Ramute,

 I feel compelled to write to you to apologise for the accumulated debris of this household and for the fact that I have to ask you to come in and clean it all up. I want to ask forgiveness for the condition that you find it in. The small facets of debris that glare out at me like strange planets piling up on the kitchen floor as in dog hairs and rice strands and crumbs of bagels and brown bread and the thin layer of grease on the stove top, the overflowing basket of clothes that need ironing, that all blend into a new universe that I am unaccustomed to dealing with.

There are days when I wish I did not need you to come make it all spanking clean again. I am not used to you. I am not used to relinquishing my duties. But you see, these days I am lost in Nutrition and Sauces and Restaurant Management and my head swirls with recipes and ideas and there are nights when I dream food and all things to do with food and I float into menus clad in dazzling white to orbit around the starters and zoom headlong for the entrees with an ignited vigour, stall over the wines only to drift into Bavarois and Souffle and home made Lady Fingers, Fruit Coulis, Sauce Anglaise, Creme Patisserie  to become enveloped in Puff Pastry on the one hundredth tedious roll. Ah the seduction of food all at the price of a tidy house.

 There are times when I want to be as I was. I miss Bach for instance and my woollen socks and I miss my experimentation in the kitchen with recipes and I miss my red wine and I miss the company of the dogs. Take tonight for instance, driving home from a day not well spent in school and the sun shining on the bay and all the world out taking in the heavens and I stuck in the car for a one hour commute thinking and wishing for something I had or thought I had. Why is that Ramute? What do you have? Are you happy? Do you like cleaning my house? Are you wishing to be cleaning your own and cooking as I do all day long in a school with marble tables and sparkling stainless steel? Do you mind ironing old t.shirts with silly logos? Do you pet my dogs? Do you sit at the table where I used to sit to dream and count the yellowing daffodils, the new buds on the ash tree beyond the window and do you wish to be somewhere else or do you simply get on with it? 

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Ah, to cook all day in a

Ah, to cook all day in a marble and stainless steel kitchen! And to come home to a clean house! (And ironed logo tees!?! Really?) Nearly as wonderful at experimentation with Bach and woolen socks! Both worlds are equally wonderful - and one will always be there when the other is through. Enjoy!
(You really iron logo tees? Wow!)

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Ah Jodi I felt like I was

Ah Jodi I felt like I was coming home to a top class hotel and yes Ramute irons the t's with her special iron and I continue to cook with my head lost in recipes and projects and all food-related topics and all keeps going with some support and a lot of blood, sweat and tears....and it happens to be my birthday on Saturday and guess who's cooking! mx

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Happy birthday! Hope it's a

Happy birthday! Hope it's a wonderful day and even better year ahead for you, Mares!
Wow, I used to think your kids had it so much better than mine simply because their mother cooks so well and you have dogs. Now they get ironed t-shirts? Boy, do I feel like a failure. :)
Luckily, my boys are out of the house now and can iron their own shirts - which I'm quite sure they don't. We are a wrinkled family all around. LOL They also both have cats now, not dogs.
Cook something scrumptious, as I'm certain you will! Enjoy!

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You see Jodi I use the

You see Jodi I use the clothes line of late because the sun moves up from the south and I can harvest it to dry the clothes and so the clothes do not go into a dryer as they do in the good ole U.S.A because electricity is sooooo expensive in this country and I prefer clothes off the clothes line as they smell like the wind and the gorse and the nettles (they do wrinkle though) and I prefer to pay Ramute because she needs the money and she is much nicer than the guy who owns the electricity company... Thanks for the birthday wishes, making out the menu as I write. Serious stuff, will post later. You are so sweet to stay in touch. Always, m

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You don't have to defend

You don't have to defend your willingness to iron! I was only teasing you. We don't use the dryer, either, except for towels. But we are in the minority of Americans, I know.
Oooh, can't wait to hear the menu!

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Ha jodi, still friends so

Ha jodi, still friends so and delighted to know you are looking after the ozone layer - rare thing these days.

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Iron Maiden

Ah Mary, wishing for what the fence divides you from. Me too. I wonder at regular intervals why I keep pushing to do different things - who knows if they're better - and never seem satisfied. See? I'm writing these days instead of just sitting at home watching TV and playing my guitar. I always want to turn back the clock to revisit former years, open up my own former head and shout inside, "Be satisfied! You have a pretty good life, you nut!" But, on I go, like you, exploring the world and pushing the edges out.

I like clotheslines, too, by the way, but in Pacific Grove we joke about how many days it takes to dry any clothes what with the salt air blowing cold all the time. So, the mean old electricity guy wins, again.

Happy Birthday. Cook up a storm and show 'em how.


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Christine, thank you for

Christine, thank you for your insight.  My mind is always betwixt and between and having spent many idyllic hours in the garden this weekend my mind settled on the organic and the soil lodged into my fingernails, the dog  sleeping on the grass, the plan to set up our chickens next weekend....................sometimes we might tend on over-stretching what we think we need and what we actually need, what we have is sometimes better than what we think we might have. Play that guitar. mx

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An accurate description of women's competing choices...

Not too many years ago in terms of the total history of mankind, most men in America were farming and working at home producing food,tanning leather, making shoes, having great friendships with their horses and milk cows, chopping the wood to heat their houses and fuel their wives' ovens. Then the economy changed, and men began to work off their farms and move to the towns and cities. I have often wondered if they felt this same pull in two directions that so many of us women feel. I don't remember ever reading a man discussing the choices with the intensity that women do--and often with men joining in with their opinions and comments as to where our place should be. You've done an excellent job of discussing the dueling ambitions so many of us women have. I suspect men too may often ponder what their lives would have been like if they had chosen a different career or job or wife. Somehow, however, it is not the constant consideration and conversation that we and society give to our choices.

How good that you have Ramute to lessen your work load. And I bet she is delighted to have this job outside her own home. It would be foolish for men to continue to manufacture their families' shoes on top of their career efforts. Yet many women selfishly try to do it all and cheat themselves out of a sensible work day. Yes, it is difficult to turn some of our responsibilitiess over to someone else, and unequal pay has sometimes prevented a career woman from having sufficient income to hire adequate amounts of help. Enter fast food and convenience foods (frozen lasagna, etc.).

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Your comment is well thought

Your comment is well thought out Sue and as always articulate and sensitive to the topic. Yes I am lucky to have Ramute but is she lucky to have me. Does she like cleaning up the mess? Does she not want to go to school too? I don't know but I would rather clean my mess and would prefer to be able to DO IT ALL but I cannot and hence the wrenching feeling of what is this all about and so I struggle onward into the unknown avoiding the fast food syndrome at all costs and my kids needing me day by day thst makes the dirty laundry appear rather trite. Thank you Sue. mx