Lovely Daughter #2 went away to Year 8 Camp this morning. They all boarded a coach to Wales and left at 11.30am… about an hour later a message came through on the school blog from one of the children saying, “This journey is taking aaaageeees.” After another six hours (and I assume about a hundred queries of “Are we there yet?”) a post came through from the teacher in charge saying that they had arrived.
The only contact we’ll have with our children this week is through the official blog, updated by the teacher or authorised students. They will be living for a week in tents without phones and electronic devices, which I think is a good thing. Instead of the usual indoor focussed activities, they will be abseiling, caving, climbing and walking in the countryside. They also often make new friends when they go away to camp for a week, as they get to know different people in the year group better, perhaps people they don’t share lessons or friendship groups with.
I’m sure she is having a wonderful time, but for the two of us left behind, it’s very quiet in the house… l miss having someone to chat to, and I will miss the way LD comes home every day with a tale that begins, “Something really funny happened at school today!” She seems to have a nice bunch of people in her year, and she always sees the funny side of things.
One advantage of LD#2 being away though is that LD#1 and I can eat some different types of food, the types that LD#2 complains about. In particular, LD#2 doesn’t like sour food, which includes anything lemon flavoured, and salad dressing. This is going to be the week that I experiment with salads.
While in Tesco looking for ingredients, I found a “1litre of Pimms for £12” promotion. Now, if there were such a thing as being able to live healthily off one foodstuff for the rest of my life, my choice would be Pimms and lemonade (in the summer, at least) so I had to have a bottle.
I thought I’d try this beautifully labelled Blackberry and Elderflower Pimms. I had plans that went beyond lemonade…
During the colder weather, I got into making reduced cider syrup to go with roast pork. (I’d recommend bog standard Stella for this, as once I tried it with some fancy artisan cider and the result was foul.) It’s really straightforward, as all you do is boil the stuff for about 15 minutes, until it turns into a thickened syrup. So I thought I’d try the same with this blackberry and elderflower and mix it in with a 50/50 olive oil/balsamic dressing.
Add to some salad leaves, with scallops fried in butter, and serve with boiled buttered potatoes.
LD#2 doesn’t know what she’s missing. She’ll just have finished eating a meal of “brown and white food”, as described by their teacher – food to keep them fuelled for a week of high intensity activities. Year 8 Camp two years ago was the week that LD#1 officially turned vegetarian, not fancying the unidentified varieties of “meat” on offer in the mess tent…