The Last Heat of 2009
Sunday morning, up with the lark. Think we'll take a ... run to Byres Road. Hey hey hey, there's a Waitrose there now!
Not brand new, but just two months old. On the way over, Linda diverted and introduced me to Lupe Pinto's, Great Western Road, wherein they sell the shop's hot dry air, scented with the volatile vapours of capsicum, for a fiver a pint. The first one, the acrid gas, the raw chili throat catching essence that mugs you at the door, that one's free.
Last year, we'd grown a whole shed load of chili peppers in the greenhouse. More accurately, we bought a bunch of plants, and okay my father actually grew them, in his greenhouse. Whatever! We'd visit every week or so, leaving with a paper bag full of the new hotness. Occasionally to share with a very few select others, but usually, just to see how many peppers we could pile on to - almost anything we were cooking - without leaving big ends smouldering on the starting line. The answer was generally about half a dozen. Seeds and all; and yes, there was smouldering.
In fact Linda rarely goes near a raw chili. Even when she cooks with them, I get to wash and chop and add those little devils myself. So when she took me into Lupe Pinto's, and the raw chili dust air slapped us upside the head and back out into the street, even before the door had fully opened, it could only be because (the last of 2009's peppers now being nought but a sweet and multiply-painful memory) she figured I must be in need of a fix.
Scovilles By The Googol
We spent some time in the shop, planning a Hot Food Night for a little family get together some time soon - Little Niece in particular is no stranger to a tube of Wasabi Pringles. Deciding to do the shopping for that another time, we left with a bottle of hot sauce. No, not Smack My Ass & Call Me Sally, which apparently I "almost" got on my birthday! Oh, and we also bagged two bags of these:
Man, are they hot. We'd picked up lunch at Waitrose - just a sandwich - and headed off to Balloch. During that lunch, I was twelve types of grateful for Linda picking up a couple of Happy Eggs (hens' eggs, hard boiled), not to mention a brace of egg custard tarts. When my egg mayo sandwich balm ran out, the Happy Egg served as temporary tongue relief, while I fidgeted, panicked and tore to get both those egg custard tarts out of the packaging, and on to my brightly glowing, traumatised taste buds.
If you ever decide to try Blair's Death Rain Habaneros, I recommend that you first purchase one of those car first aid kits from Halfords, empty it of its eye patches and bandannas, and refill with two of every hard boiled egg product sold in your town. Then at least you might be equipped to survive their third-degree excesses, until you reach a health care professional.
Wife Almost Eats Own Foot
Balloch was scenic, ducks were photographed, fondly remembered day trips and weekends away together - some of these decades past - were reminisced upon. Luss was beautiful too; even though darkness had fallen when we arrived, judicious stop adjustment allowed Linda to continue with her photography. Hooray for the bucket brigade! Once little more than an analog sound delay processing solution, the now ubiquitous charge-coupled device has found its true niche, comradeship and happiness, as the millionth part of a mega pixel.
The journey home was extended as an accident closed the eastbound M8 for about seven hours. Sitting in that effective car park, we joked about how there was nothing but that second bag of Blair's Death Rain Habanero in the boot to sustain us. "Well, enjoy it, been nice knowing you!" said Linda, while I reminded her that according to The Daily Mash, Davina McCall, recently stuck while driving in snow, had been forced to tweet about eating her own foot.
The giant conga-line of M8 out-of-towners, diverted by the closure down to the Edinburgh Road, mistook the Glesga weekday peak-time bus lane for an Embra full-timer, studiously avoiding it. And quite annoyingly, refusing to allow anyone with the sheer temerity to drive upon its sacred surface, to change lane from there! For clearly, such must be sinners and transgressors. Nevertheless, their lifelong quest for a clue left us more savvy local types free to wheech home, on our own private road network.