Day 367, Year 6: More Tricks than Treats
Date: Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Weather: Overcast and Cooler
Location: Eel Pond, Woods Hole, Massachusetts

I think I must be having pre-Halloween tricks being played on me. I went in to pick up my computer today and was told that they could find nothing wrong with it. They turned it off and on repeatedly and it always booted with no “screen display driver” warnings or delays as I had been having. I brought it home, tried to turn it on, and nothing. So the computer works in the shop, but not here. We let it sit a while and tried to turn it on again, and this time it booted. But clearly there is something wrong. I guess I’ll just continue to use it when I can get it to turn on and when it doesn’t, I’ll take it back to the shop. This is not a perfect solution, but it will have to do for now. Then there is the case of the missing LL Bean bag full of spices, very precious Madagascar vanilla beans, and other items. I took the bag to Heather’s today to make chutney and vanilla extract from the vanilla beans. I thought I put it on the front porch and asked Mark to take it out to the car at the same time I asked him to take out the trash. When we got home tonight, there was no bag in the car. We called Jed and he looked everywhere, and still no bag. All I can figure is that there is a feisty little Halloween ghost playing tricks on me and it is very frustrating.

Both Sam and Jonah have colds and were too sick to go to school today. Heather decided to stay home with them and she decided she would take advantage of the time at home by making chutney. Jed drove to work and handed the van over to me so I could go buy the chutney makings. I then delivered the goods to Heather and we worked together for the rest of the afternoon canning enough chutney to get us both through the year and we used the vanilla beans I bought in Madagascar to make vanilla extract. We used a whole bottle of Grey Goose vodka and half a bottle of Madagascar clear rum for another batch. If it works, we will have enough vanilla for the next decade. Making the chutney was a more familiar process. For years I have used the apple chutney recipe that is in the Ball Canning Book and now Heather and Jed do the same. So we combined efforts today and did a triple batch. I also picked what I think will be the last green beans from the garden late this afternoon. I’ve never had fresh green beans this late in the season and the plants are still flowering. But surely we’ll get a frost soon. There is snow forecast for other places in Massachusetts tonight, but the temperature here on the Cape is moderated by the water and we are just expecting rain and overnight lows in the 40’s. But sometime in the next couple of weeks we’ll surely get a frost and that will be the end of this year’s green beans.

So it was a busy day in the kitchen and the pantry is little fuller as a result. We had a great curry dinner tonight with the addition of the just canned chutney. It was delicious. During dinner Heather and Jed proposed a toast in honor of our wedding anniversary. Evidently it is tomorrow, but both Mark and I had forgotten. They announced that we will not be seeing them tomorrow evening as they are giving us a gift certificate for a special evening out. What a special treat!

Day 368, Year 6: Get Ready for a Good Laugh
Day 361, Year 6: More Electrical Problems