Tuesday, January 18, 2022

The anti-inflammatory.

Covid cases are falling rapidly in the UK. From 200,000 positive tests a day the numbers have fallen to well below 90,000 .Soon all restrictions will be lifted - although the rush to get rid of them may be based more on the  politics than on the science . Here in France things are two or three weeks behind the UK. Daily numbers are still nudging 400,000 so an abundance of caution is warranted for just a little longer.

Sophie remains gloriously innocent of all the things that concern humankind. The lockdown has meant that she has had companionship and long walks every day. With restaurants out of bounds there has also been more use made of the kitchen. This is something she heartily approves of.

Down by the stream the banks on either side have been churned up by overnight visitors. Deer, fox, badger and wild boar prints evident this morning. The farmers sheepdog has also been here. The mud has frozen so the paw prints provide Sophie with a mass of scents to savour.

The courier driver who lives on the outskirts of the village sees us as we're climbing the hill back up to The Rickety Old Farmhouse. He has a package of spices. 'The Font' has ordered some Asafoetida which the local supermarkets don't stock. It's come from Germany. We once tracked down the real thing in the market in Delhi. The smell of the wild bulb roots before they're dried  is truly 'disturbing' and the Asafoetida merchants congregate in a part of the market away from all the others.  A friend in Atlanta tells us apart from cooking it is also one of the greatest anti-inflammatories although little research has been carried out on it in the West.

 We have clearly got ourselves on to an e-mailing list for new hotel openings. This one has a 1950's feel to it and is in Flagstaff, a place we have never been to. There is something rather charming about the randomness of these unexpected communications  :https://highcountrymotorlodge.com/

 This mornings music on NRJ :https://www.nrj.fr/artistes/benson-boone/videos/benson-boone-ghost-town-71356030



Lisa in France said...

I would guess Japan is probably a month or so behind France, so we've still got a ways to go. Tokyo is probably going back into a state of "quasi emergency" in the next few days, so I am looking forward to getting my booster shot in a couple of hours. Looking ahead to freer times, Charlie had his first "socialization" outing with the dog trainer yesterday. I thought he would panic being handed off to a stranger, but he trotted off happily into the elevator and there is photographic evidence that he enjoyed his walk. This makes me feel much more comfortable that, if we are actually able to travel to the US this spring, Charlie will manage. Cherry used to stay with this same trainer and apparently even socialized with other dogs at his home (not a normal girl-PON thing it seems). I have been to Flagstaff, which looks nothing like the rest of Arizona but weirdly resembles upstate New York. The hotel looks like fun - I am happy they are finding ways to preserve some of these old motels

WFT Nobby said...

I've tried using asafoetida as a recommended substitute for garlic, but the results were to me mind (or at least my taste buds) unsatisfactory. I hadn't heard of its purported anti-inflammatory properties, but will probably stick to the definitely efficacious two tablets of ibuprofen prior to a long bike ride, to prevent my aging right knee joint from 'crunching' painfully!
The Flagstaff motel prompts regrets that this week I turned down the offer of a road trip (plus hiking and biking) in Arizona and Utah with my American friends. It is now concern for Bertie rather than Covid that's keeping me in Scotland.
Cheers, Gail.

Angus said...

This 'special' time with Bertie is priceless. Utah will be there when needed. Stay strong.

Angus said...

You are right. Socializing is definitely not a PONette trait. Well done Charlie - you can be 200% certain he will love the change of scenery when you head off this Spring.

Coppa's girl said...

A very frosty walk for you this morning!
If it gets much colder here, I'll be able to take similar frosty photos too. Inca may be better equipped to withstand the cold, she came originally from a breeding kennels high in the hills above Malaga. She's been in warmer climes for so long now, that like her owner, her blood has probably thinned. So shortly we're off to walk along beside the beach in the sunshine!

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
Hing, the Hindi word for asafoetida, is perhaps rather more descriptive of the 'minging' smell that arises from this spice! Used judiciously, it undoubtedly imparts a flavour level to dishes that might be described as 'umami'; a depth and savouriness. It must be kept subtle, however, for too much and things can taste rancid. Though too little and its benefits are lost.

Gail mentions it as a garlic 'substitute'... but actually, garlic substituted hing in sub-continental cooking once it arrived with the Portuguese. Prior to that, too, there was no chili - the only heat in their dishes arose from use of cloves, ginger and black pepper. Just in case anyone was interested! YAM xx

Travel said...

Flagstaff is pretty, and on the way to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon from Phoenix. Worth the trip.

Stephanie said...

What a wonderful collection of footprints! Plus lovely atmospheric photos in yesterday's post. I know I'm very "late to the party" but I still would like to belatedly wish Sophie a very happy birthday and year to come. 9 years old - how can it be?