The little fella woke up with a very hungry tummy and requested eggs for breakfast. Why not indeed. I can do eggs on a school day. In fact, remembering the Victorian’s penchant for elaborate breakfasts, we had kedgeree with a fried egg on top with paprika. Delicious. I was rather impressed with myself as I tend to have a more leisurely breakfast once he has been dispatched to school on a bowl of cereal, but today it was all go in our house.
I went straight to the forest where I had arranged to walk the dogs with Gilli. It had been pouring with rain earlier so yet again I left my camera at home 😦 . The weather was good to us during our walk though so I really enjoyed walking along with occasional glimpses of sunshine, chatting away. Gilli is a very interesting person and does a lot of voluntary work with some of the more troubled youths in our society. Did you know that Magistrates don’t get paid? I was so shocked to discover that someone who does such a significant and important job has to do it voluntarily. Gilli writes a very interesting blog about musings on life at Ape and Angel. Have a look.
As I was driving home, intending to spend a few hours in the garden, I received a phone call from my sister Lucy, the conclusion of which was that instead of spending a day together in London on Sunday, having a picnic in Kensington Gardens, everyone was coming to me for lunch. We quickly worked out who is bringing what and I made a spur of the moment decision to go to the Farmer’s Market at Brede which is towards Rye.
I went to Brede specifically to buy 2 of Julia’s delicious chickens which she is not allowed to sell at Rolvenden on a Thursday because someone else sells chickens. But I prefer Julia’s as the flavour is the best there is and they are not so enormous they could be mistaken for a small turkey. So I went to Brede to buy some chickens and came home with an elbow of pork. And no chickens. I was there half an hour after the market started and she had already sold out. Luckily there was a very helpful lady at the next stall selling pigs. I wanted a large shoulder to slow roast but she assured me the butchers always like the elbow as it is even better. She had an honest face so I bought the elbow.
To market, to market, to buy a fat pig
Home again, home again, jiggety-jig.
I also bought some cavolo nero, which I have never had before,
a dressed crab, which is one of my favourite foods on the planet,
and some cup cakes.
I confess I did eat a cup cake. The cheeky little thing winked at me as I walked past and drew me towards it. I was quite possibly even hypnotised because before I knew what was happening I had bought 4 pretty cup cakes for a treat tonight and one to eat in the car on the way home. Small ones don’t have any calories, right?
At lunch time I made a crab sandwich with half the crab. I could have eaten it all but that seems a little extravagant so I have some for tomorrow. 2 slices of wholemeal bread, some lettuce from the garden and the crab mixed with a little mayonnaise.
Wow, it was good. You can really taste the sea in a crab. I couldn’t even wait to get all the sandwich on the plate before I started eating it.
I sat down to eat my sandwich and read the local paper, knowing I would immediately begin tutting about the new Tesco opening locally on Monday.
I HATE TESCO. I HATE TESCO. I HATE TESCO. I HATE TESCO. I HATE TESCO.
£1 in every £7 spent in Britain is spent in Tesco. Harrogate, which had been resisting Tesco for years and was the last remaining postcode in the country without a Tesco, has recently capitulated. This country is blindly walking towards domination by one massive company. And now the beautiful Weald of Kent is being covered in it too.
Actually I dislike each of the big 4 supermarkets and never go near any of them, they are all as bad as each other. But I dislike Tesco the most as it is the biggest so it has more clout. They import food across the globe with no thought to their carbon footprint or supporting British producers, they drive prices down so low farmers are driven out of business, and the terms on which they operate are unforgivable. They agree contracts at the last minute so if you are a carrot farmer and Tesco has said it will buy your entire crop, they will, just as you have harvested your crop, buy from somewhere else if they come in cheaper, leaving you with an enter crop of harvested carrots to get rid of.
People go there because they think it is cheaper. And yes, for hundreds of everyday items, they are the cheapest. Other supermarkets may price match Tesco but are rarely cheaper. But once you are lured in, they use very clever marketing, confusing price comparisons and subliminal advertising to get you to make more purchases of products with a hefty profit to them. I shop carefully and save money by eating more beans and lentils and less meat. I make my own food so I am not paying someone else to do it. So I can afford to buy food at local farm shops, farmers markets and more expensive local shops. But overall, I bet I spend the same as someone who shops at Tesco and buys ready meals and eats meat every day.
I knew I would start tutting when I bought the paper and saw the headline but the reason for this outburst is because inside the paper I see there are proposals for a Sainsbury and Tesco in Staplehurst. Say NO everyone. The free car park at the station will be gone and parking at the station is hard enough anyway. This will be a disaster. I am so angry.
I urge you all to read Joanna Blythman’s ‘Shopped, The Shocking Power of Britain’s Supermarkets’. I want you to read it in the hope it will turn you away from these shops that are destroying our food production, globally. But if you still want to shop at Tesco, please read this so you are aware of what you are contributing to. I think you have a moral obligation to know the facts. While I was looking for the exact title I noticed there is another book available on a similar theme (I assume) called ‘Tescopoly; How One Shop Came Out On Top And Why It Matters’. It may not be good for my blood pressure to read it.
Rant over. Anger remains.
I made supper this afternoon so it is ready for after fireworks and picking someone special up from the train station. In keeping with fireworks evening, I made a chili. As usual I didn’t have all the right ingredients so improvised. Instead of red kidney beans, I used up the chickpeas left over from yesterdays dipping sauce. I also popped in some cavolo nero and mushrooms for extra nutrition and flavour.
We spent a fun evening at Harvey’s school where they laid on a fireworks display and the PTA were selling toffee apples (in evidence round Harvey’s face), doughnuts, chili, hot dogs and drinks to raise some money. It was fun to catch up with people I haven’ t seen for a while and the fireworks were great, and enjoyed by all.
Time to go and get someone special from the train from Durham :-). Have a great evening and please read that book if you shop at one of the big 4, especially Tesco. Try going to the market. Even if it’s just once.