Helen (heleninwales) wrote,

Today I made a cake

I have had quite a domestic day today. First I strimmed some of the grass in the back garden. I only had a narrow window of opportuntiy because no one wants their neighbour using a strimmer too early in the morning, but the forecast said it would start raining at 10 a.m. I did about 45 minutes and now the top strip is tidy. It didn't actually rain until quite late in the afternoon, but I did as much as I'd planned, so it was fine.

I then got washed and changed and went to the cafe in town for the weekly Welsh chat. There's around a dozen of us altogether, though not everyone is there every week. Today there were nine. It's very informal. We just discuss whatever occurs to us. B is our Welsh tutor and another first language speaker also attends, so it's brilliant for picking up vocabulary local to the area. Today I learned that round here people use a different word for "funeral" than the one normally taught. Actually, having looked in the dictionary app, I see there are three words for "funeral" and the local one is the third in the list.

We also discussed our plans to visit Pennant Melangell. This is the church dedicated to St Melangell and, unlike most saints that have English churches named after them, Melangell actually lived at the place where the church and shrine now stand. Here's her story, if you wish to read about her. I haven't visited the valley before, but apparently it is a very peaceful place, even if one is not at all religious.

We also provided some inspiration to one of our group who is a potter. She arrived bemoaning the fact that she had half-made a batch of pots but didn't know what decoration to put on them. After hearing about Melangell and also having been reminded of the stories in the Mabinogion, she exclaimed that a woman hiding a hare in her skirts would be perfect and rushed off fired with enthusiasm to complete her work.

My Welsh is actually becoming pretty fluent now, so much so that I carried on speaking Welsh when I entered the new baker's shop on the square. I had to consciously switch language because the young woman who runs it is, I think, Eastern European. She's not a native English speaker anyway.

After lunch and catching up online, I made a cake. Now this is something that doesn't happen very often but a friend had given me two duck eggs. Another friend had given her half a dozen or so but she doesn't actually like them and so was trying to give them away. I'd never eaten duck eggs because we didn't have them growing up in a city and I'd never wanted to buy them in case I thought they were horrible. So this was my chance to try duck eggs for free.

I ate the first one hard boiled for lunch a few days ago. The taste was fine, but there was something about the texture of the white that I didn't quite like, so the second one has gone into a chocolate cake. Apparently duck eggs are excellent for cakes. As you can see, my cake wouldn't win any prizes in a competition, but it smells wonderful and I'm sure it will taste lovely.

chocolate cake

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