We have had an unusually cultivated day, in that the French Correspondent came by to talk about the work of a very fine contemporary — if elderly — French poet who we have had the privilege of entertaining. So the Professor and the FC spent the afternoon on the eternally fascinating problems of literary translation and why one language is not like another. There was a natural hiatus around 4 when we decided to take a break from all this advanced linguistics and go and try out the soda bread recipe given him by a lady in the County Tipperary a week ago, by way of experiment. We’d barely got the stuff in the oven when there was a phone-call from the Laird of the Pink Castle saying he might ’swing by’ … so we returned to the consideration of intransitive verbs in the placid knowledge that there was something for tea, and when in due course Laird & Mrs Pink Castle tipped up, the soda-bread disappeared with amazing celerity (they had spent the afternoon painting and heaving stuff around, and a hefty tea was obviously more than welcome). It was all very nice, and a further instance of the basic principle that fortune favour the prepared.
PS. The ‘Smoked Gubeen’ cheese brought back from the Co. Cork combined with the flesh of an Arbroath Smokie brought to us the other day from Arbroath by a guest, to make a terrifically elegant quiche.