A THOUSAND WORDS - Alex Waterhouse-Hayward's blog on pictures, plants, politics and whatever else is on his mind.


Gerald Durrell & Jell-O Mousse - A Perfect Day
Saturday, September 19, 2009

Theodore Stephanides: Who was it who said, "If you can control your family, you've gone terribly wrong somewhere"?
Mother: Aristotle?
Theodore Stephanides: No.
Mother: Was it me?
Theodore Stephanides: Yes.
From My Family and Other Animals, Masterpiece Theatre 2005

Some days, these days, can be melancholy ones. But today’s was one of those days were Rebecca managed to say, “When I made like I was going to push Aby (my wife Rosemary) into the VanDusen pond in her wheelchair she actually smiled after!” Rebecca and I took turns in pushing (I pushed uphill!) Rosemary during our visit to VanDusen. The girls did cartwheels on the Great Lawn and I took some pictures of them with the big camera on a tripod that I lugged around with pleasure. We had our little fits, our little fights but we arrived home happy.

Lauren waited outside the front gate for her mother to appear at the end of the block as I got the meal ready. Dessert was special as I combined a strawberry Jell-O (one layer) with strawberry mousse on top.

It was last week that Hilary brought Hitchcock’s 1954 film Dial M For Murder with Ray Milland and Grace Kelly. In spite of Grace Kelly the plot was much too convoluted and complex for Lauren to figure out and she became bored. “Papi,” Hilary told me, “If we are going to see a movie get one that Lauren can enjoy.” As difficult as that sounds, if one considers that not only do we want to please the 7 year-old girl but also ourselves, it was a simple task. I went to Videomatica to the Australian/New Zealand/British section and I found many films that would have satisfied us all. I picked the 2005 Masterpiece Theatre production My Family and Other Animals based on the autobiographical work of naturalist Gerald Durrell who happened to be the brother of Lawrence Durrell one of my favourite authors. The film was hilarious and it pleased us all. Lauren laughed a lot.

Traditionally I like to cut roses for Saturday’s dinner table. The scan you see above is of the roses that made up the arrangement of today’s table. For me they represent the perfect end of a perfect day.


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