Saturday, April 19, 2014

Slowly Speeding Ahead

The train ticket has been purchased, the decision made: I will be leaving France at the end of July. Which is not to say I won't come back! In fact, as part of my projet tutoré I am going to be sending out CVs this week to services de remplacement in different regions, and submitting my application on line through the national service based in Paris that matches agricultural enterprises who need temporary workers (due to accident, illness, maternity leave, planned vacations, etc.) with people like me who are willing to do that work. I'm hoping to get my student visa extended a few months so that if I'm actually offered a job it will be easier to apply for a work visa. Apparently changing from "student" to "employed" is a matter of changing the color of the label on my dossier, or the equivalent, but if I'm not still a student and have gone back to being a tourist, my dossier will be shredded (or the equivalent) and I'll have to start from the beginning with a new visa application. Which might require going back to San Francisco. In any event, much more complicated.

Only two more weeks of school left, at the end of May, which is cause for much rejoicing. And despair because YIKES I still have so much work to do on my two projects it's not even funny. Everything is in my head for my personal project (due May 15) but almost nothing is on paper; the Ferme Bergeras project (due June 15) is halfway written, at least, and will be fairly easy to finish. I hope.

The housesitting assignments are falling into place. I will be near Jonzac, north of Bordeaux, for the last two weeks of July, taking care of a house and two rental gîtes and two dogs for a UK couple who are going back to visit family. I've booked and bought my ticket from Jonzac to London on July 31st but at this point I'm not entirely sure what happens then; I've applied for another housesitting job the first week of August, and I still really, really want to go to the World Pipe Band Competition on August 16th, so I'm looking for places to stay in Glasgow - and London, I suppose, or anywhere between - between August 1st and 17th. I've applied for several housesitting jobs during the last two weeks of August, and have a job taking care of a house and two cats for three weeks in September. And whither then? I cannot say.

To dresse Snayles.

Take your Snayles (they are no way so as in Pottage) and wash them well in many waters, and when you have done put them in a white Earthen Pan, or a very wide Dish, and put as much water to them as will cover them, and then set your Dish or Pan on some coales, that it may heat by little and little, and then the Snayles will come out of the shells and so dye, and being dead, take them out, and wash them very well in Water and salt twice or thrice over; then put them in a Pipkin with Water and Salt, and let them boyle a little while in that, so take away the rude slime they have, then take them out againe and put them in a Cullender; then take excellent sallet Oyle and beat it a great while upon the fire in a frying Pan, and when it boyls very fast, slice two or three Onyons in it, and let them fry well, then put the Snayles in the Oyle and Onyons, and let them stew together a little, then put the Oyle, Onyons, and Snayles altogether in an earthen Pipkin of a fit size for your Snayles, and put as much warm water to them as will serve to boyle them, and make the Pottage and season them with Salt, and so let them boyle three or foure hours; then mingle Parsly, Pennyroyall, Fennell, Tyme, and such Herbs, and when they are minced put them in a Morter, and beat them as you doe for Green-sauce, and put in some crums of bread soaked in the Pottage of the Snayles, and then dissolve it all in the Morter with a little Saffron and Cloves well beaten, and put in as much Pottage into the Morter as will make the Spice and bread and Herbs like thickning for a pot, so put them all into the Snayles and let them stew in it, and when you serve them up, you may squeeze into the pottage a Lemon, and put in a little Vinegar, or if you put in a Clove of Garlick among the Herbs, and beat it with them in the Morter; it will not tast the worse; serve them up in a Dish with sippets of Bread in the bottom. The Pottage is very nourishing, and they use them that are apt to a Consumption.

- The Compleat Cook (1658)

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