Friday, June 29, 2007

The Move From H*ll; Stage 1

The move from hell; stage 1

You know, if I was smarter (biiiig IF!), I should've timed this story to start on Saturday, July 7th. Get it? Prologue? Stage 1? Tour de France???

Oh well, since I'm not smarter...

The last time we moved we had a "moving company" (down here they call them "removalists") move everything we'd packed. It didn't go well, the boss of the company was there and he insisted on stacking stuff in the truck himself (instead of his helper who was much more experienced at it), and much of our bookshelves, desks, etc were pretty scuffed up. Also, he was working at a snails pace figuring he could milk us for around $2500. After 20 mins I saw what he was doing so I grabbed my own hand truck and started running loads to the truck along with his helper. His helper was a very cool guy and a damned fast worker, he was also pissed at the loading job his boss was doing so he and I loaded and unloaded very quickly. All in all, we got away with $1600.

Also, since I had to really hurry for 2 days (3 HUGE truckloads) I kinda tweaked my back; but that's another story.

Anyways, this time we decided to rent a truck. Me, being a former truck driver and freight tosser arounder, would be able to drive it. I also know how to move large, awkward, and heavy things without killing yourself --as long as you don't rush! It turns out they are pretty darned cheap and come with a liftgate, cool! For 10 days of having the truck (see, I told you we wasn't hurrying) it was just under $800. No worries. The truck was also the EXACT SAME MODEL as one that I used to drive in Fairbanks for 4 years.

What could be easier, right?

Famous last words... Stay tuned for stage 2!

Went to the Egyptian exhibit today. It's the one from the Louvre (in France) that's been on display at our state art gallery for 3 months. It was amazing! Unfortunately, no cameras, darn.

Got to see lots and lots of really neat old stuff. There were even sections of The Book of The Dead on the orginal papyrus! Oh the fun I could've had if I could read heiroglyphics! It would've been neat to see that mummy of a cat come to life and terrorise everyone --WEEHOO!

I'll talk more about the exhibit next time, just wanted to get something about it in today.

Food Stuff:

What's that you say? You're making something and the recipe calls for buttermilk? But, you don't have any buttermilk and the shops just closed! Oh, the horrors! What to do now...??? Have no fear, dave is here!

Buttermilk substitute:

250 mils (8 oz (1 cup)) of skim milk
1 tbspn lemon juice or cider vineger*

Mix the first two ingredients together and stir. Let sit for 5 mins. Wa-La! instant buttermilk!

*don't use distilled vinegar EVER, for ANYTHING --you don't want to know what it's gone through or what it started out as (I'll give you a hint: think yummy, scrumptious leftover heavy crude oil). Always use fermented vinegar.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

The Move From Hell --Prologue

Well, The Move From H*ll is done and finished. The Cold/Flu/Sinus Infection From H*ll is also over...

Does that explain why I haven't been blogging for 2 months? My last post was on friday the 13th, and no, I'm not superstitious about the number 13 --I happen to know why it's considered an unlucky number and the reason is pretty sickening, nuff said.

Anyways... That week we had got a load (2200 pounds) of firewood for the winter (yes, there are winters down here), and we had a call from the real estate agency informing us that the owner wants to sell the house. Now, this we knew cus he told us himself 2 weeks previous. However, the B*STARD also told us we have plenty of time and he is in no hurry. Hmmmm, I guess 2 weeks in his little world is "plenty of time". Our lease was through September, but we didn't want to go through weekly open inspections for 6 months.

Sooooo... "A packing we will go... A packing we will go... Hi Ho the Dairyo a packing we will go!"

The story continues... stay tuned!

Food Stuff

Grilled Cheese sandwich!

Yes, I hear you all (all 2 of you) groan... "Dave, why the hell are you putting a recipe for a grilled cheese sandwich here?"

My answer is: A proper Grilled Cheese Sandwich is an art form, and you gotta learn to do it right.

You aren't going to get any "what you need" or "what you do", we'll just dive straight in!

You'll want white bread for this (I'm a big fan of wholegrain, wholemeal, multi-grain etc breads, but nothing beats white for grilled cheese sandwiches), and cheddar cheese. You can use other types of cheeses, but I've found that cheddar melts at the same time the bread is grilled --very handy.

DO NOT TOAST THE BREAD FIRST!!!!!!!!!! That is THE cardinal sin of grilled cheese sandwich making.

Take your butter out of the fridge at least an hour previous so that it's very spreadable. Do not use margarine or any of that other spreadable crap. Butter one side of each slice of bread only; insuring you get the butter all the way to the crust and have total coverage. Sprinkle a bit of salt on each buttered side.

Slice the cheese, do not grate (it melts too quick if you grate it). Make the sandwich with the buttered side on the OUTSIDE with the cheese slices on the INSIDE (duh). Place the sandwich on a medium hot frypan/griddle pan/grill hotplate. Check the bottom after 2 mins, the bread should be toasty brown and the cheese starting to melt. Flip the sandwich over and grill till the second side is done --the cheese should be perfectly melted at this point.

Serve with hot tomato soup!