Tuesday, September 22, 2009

News & Notes

Upham Manor is soon to be host to a visiting envoy from the sovereign state of Canada. Little is known about this far off and exotic place, other than that it is largely covered by ice and government run health care.

Our good friend Jaeline will be visiting the Manor, no doubt sent here by the Canadian Emperor (or whatever sort of ruler they have there), on a journey of peace and to hopefully open dialog between our two peoples. Prior to this diplomatic mission, Jaeline had been working with the natives of Quebec, learning their primative language, and teaching them the Queen's English. This has been quite a daunting task, one which puts her life in harm's way every day.

While in Boston, Jaeline will be exposed to local customs such as eating, drinking, more eating, and jousting. The current schedule calls for a site-seeing in Boston on Friday, a trip down to the Connecticut Renaissance Festival on Saturday, and Apple Picking & Wine Tasting on Sunday.

It is our hope that this meeting will open a new age of peace between our two countries.

Here is the only map of the mysterious land of Canada that I could find that had more information than simply, "Here there Be Monsters".


Little Master Benjamin continues to grow and explore his world. His latest adventures have been been forays into the cabinets and drawers of the kitchen. Armed with only a stethescope, a Phillips screwdriver, and a hacksaw, he has proven to be able to bypass the drawer security and pillage the contents.

He seems particularly interested in baking equipment. Who knows? Perhaps he may one day bake award winning cakes or help break people out of prison.


Work at the laboratory continues to be very positive. I have recently unveiled a number of new classes for personnel here and they have been well received. It's quite amazing how much an enjoyable job can affect one's life. Janet has seen me in both the high mountains and the low valleys of employment and she can attest to how completely this one aspect of life can affect my attitude and outlook on life. I'm very blessed to be where I am and doing what I do -- and I know it. Not a day goes by that I'm not thankful for where I am.


That's all for now. There haven't been many pressing matters of late to bring forth to this forum. I continue to despise Obama and all things quasi-socialist, I'm disturbed by high prices, and I feel strong contempt for the failures of the GOP. But for a time, at least, politics is not a weight I care to carry around. I'm enjoying the beautiful autumn we're having. If the New England Patriots can figure out how to motivate their offensive line and perhaps sign a few linebackers, all should be well with the world, at least for a while.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Millions of Peaches, Peaches for Free

Peaches come from a can.
They were put there by a man
In a factory downtown.
And if I had my little way
I'd eat peaches every day
Sun-soaking bulges in the shade.

So goes the song Peaches by the Presidents. Here on Upham Manor, however, our peaches don't come from a can. They are home grown in our own orchard. (OK, so maybe it isn't an "orchard" so much as it is a single tree, but it's mine and I love it.) I love peaches. I think they're the perfect fruit. You don't have to peel them, skin them, or spit out seeds. And these are, without a doubt, absolutely the most delicious, juicy, sweet sun-soaked bulges you've ever tasted. I'm not exaggerating. These suckers are absolutely amazing. I'll give you a dollar if you try one and don't agree they're the best you've ever tasted.

Now, being that they are grown right here on my property, they are a bit more "real" than what you might be used to. That is to say, they are not flawless, pink and yellow orbs that you'd likely find on the shelves of a market. There are little brown speckles (made by rain spots I am told), and it's not at all uncommon for their to be scars and breaks in the skin. My peaches have suffered from splitting. I've tried a number of things to fix this, but I suspect it comes from rapid growth. The skin on top tends to split open, sort of like you'd see on a tomato. It heals over, but it leaves a grey scar on the fruit. Because of this, a large portion of my crop tends to look less than appealing to most people's spoiled eye.

So, if you come over, I'll likely serve them cut up in a bowl for you to eat like tiny slices of cantelope, with all the imperfections carefully skinned away. Or, perhaps after a feast, I'll serve you half a peach, peeled and soaking in a glass red wine. If you've never tried that little Italian secret, you've not lived.

So come by the Manor this week. The peaches have all been picked and are preparing to be eaten and I can guarantee you that you won't be disappointed.