Friday, July 25, 2014

Thursday thoughts, or almost a week recovering


in which our plucky heroine attempts not to scratch...

So last week was July Coronation, held not far from Portland out at the old nuclear plant site; have avoided the site in the past, due to the fearsome reputation of their local mosquito population. However, there are reasons to defy my usual habits... It brought me great joy to see my friend Ursul elevated to the Order of the Laurel, and to be there when my friend Elisabeth Blackdane was put on vigil... The site was just as mosquito-ridden as I had feared, (dozens of non-consensual bug bites) but to be there as witness to the honoring of friends was worth the price.

Prior to the event, I made a large batch of bramble sekanjabin*, a middle-eastern drink syrup of flavored sweetened vinegar, most commonly made from mint, but since there were last years berries in the freezer, it seemed like a good plan. The syrup, added in small quantities to unfamiliar water, not only tastes good but helps greatly with hydration in the summer heat - the site was most humid being on the river and surrounded by swamps and ponds

The other Very Happy thing that happened at Coronation, was that my donation of a custom 1" enamel medallion raised $500 for Providence Cancer Center! Some of my friends are walking to the coast to raise money for Providence Cancer center, and while I can't walk with them, I can make artful regalia. Makes me feel really good to have been able to stand up in court and help this very worthy cause, which has such personal significance for me. Providence treated me really well on my cancer journey, and this lets me do a little bit too, to give back...

Came home from event entirely exhausted, (this must change, though I've not the stamina of twenty and more years ago...) and promptly fell asleep 'til after 10PM, then woke to ride my bike to the store, under a nightsky of Georgia O'Keefe clouds. As usual post-event have been thinking about what could be an improvement on how things went, what worked well and what did not... my current seating arrangement (bottom half of a directors chair) works just fine, but is heavy to carry around... a tripod stool with an integral carry strap would be lighter and easier to carry, and if it was also comfortable to sit on, would be better...

* Sekanjabin can be made in various flavors, the recipe I use is on this page, about halfway down...

2 comments:

  1. As best I can tell, the defining feature of sekanjabin is the combination of vinegar with either sugar or honey. The usual modern variant, which is what I make, is flavored with mint. There's a period reference to quince sekanjabin, and one to a spiced version. The one period recipe I actually have is for "simple sekanjabin," and has nothing other than vinegar and sugar or honey, plus water.

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  2. Quince sekanjabin sounds divine!! I didn't intend to imply that my variant on sekanjabin was either period or even specifically Middle Eastern, just that I was using what I had on hand... as there were a few possible variations in the Claudia Roden cookbook, I just took it a little further in a PNW sort of way...

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