#25 Photograph something you’ve been looking at or walking past for a long time, but which you’ve never photographed before. — Palani Mohan

I just discovered a really cool photography group called 52×52 that was started by a Bath local. The photo challenge is set by 52 accomplished photographers who set out new challenges each week. I just recently discovered this group so I have a lot of catching up to do!

For challenge #25 I decided to submit the following photo:

Challenge #25

I walk past this cemetery every time I go for my Italian class. Since my class is in the evenings the cemetery’s generally extra eerie and spooky and causes me to quicken the pace a little. I won’t lie…I think I also hold my breath as well…I have no idea how old the cemetery is but finding one in such a condition would be pretty rare back at home.

When I took the photo today I got a completely different vibe. The beautiful and sunny Sunday altered my previous conception of the cemetery and peace and tranquility replaced fear and panic! However, as you can probably tell, I’m still not brave enough to venture into the graveyard 😛

*note: I don’t know what the difference between a graveyard and cemetery is…feel free to enlighten me!

Multi-level confusion

When I first started thinking about this post it started off as a general musing. But the more  time I spent musing the more annoyed I got. Enough to stick this post in my griping section. Yes, it’s that serious. I’ve been living in England since September now and there are so many things here that are just completely non-sensical. But if you try pointing out the absence of logic to them and you’ll only be blasted at full force with patriotic love.

I suppose you want to know the premise of my ranting and raving so let me rewind back a little bit.

I finally figured out why my pizza deliveries have never arrived, why I’ve been paying incorrect amounts for my utility bills, and why I’ve been shot dirty looks by visitors who have come to my flat after giving them directions. APPARENTLY (and I really did just find out about this very recently), the way the English define stories/levels of buildings is very different from the North American way (thereby, obviously wrong). Since moving into my current flat I’ve been telling everyone that I live on the 3rd floor. Why? Because my flat is on the third level of the building. Simple. So when a plumber called me up to see if he could come by to check in on our plumbing (we had an issue involving a broken pipe) I told him no problem. Here’s how the conversation went:

Plumber: Is it alright if I pop on over to check your pipes?

Me: Of course! Not a problem, I will prepare some tea and biscuits for you.

Plumber: That sounds absolutely smashing. You are on the 2nd story, is that right?

Me: Oh, no, kind sir, we’re on the 3rd floor.

Plumber: Well this is quite curious indeed. I have here that Sarah is on the 1st floor, you are on the second, and Alfred is on the 3rd.

Me: I have been living here for 5 months and can tell you quite confidently that we are on the- *lightbulb goes off*– …ohhhhh….wait…I think what I call the 3rd floor is what is the 2nd floor in England…

Plumber: You’re from America, are you?

Me: Excuse me, I’m from CANADA, but…close enough. So yes, I’m on the 2nd story. I’m so sorry about the confusion. Really, really sorry about that. I cannot apologize enough.

Plumber: That’s quite alright. I’ll pop by in a jiffy.

Me: That sounds great. Sorry sorry sorry sorry sorry……sorry sorry sorry………

So as an FYI, buildings here start off on the GROUND FLOOR and work their way up (ground floor –> first floor –> second floor etc). When I asked my friends about this nonsense they were quick to point out that the North American way was backwards, which I would have happily accepted if only they hadn`t sounded so unsure of their answer when I asked:

Me: How many floors does this building have?

Friends: 6

Me: What floor would you call the top one?

Friends: …the top flat. Me: Ok what else? What floor/story/level would be the top flat of this 6 story building?

Friends: …the 5th floor…it just makes sense! Your way doesn’t make sense!

Our friendship now ceases to exist…


I just finished skyping with a near and dear friend whose name rhymes with CALM, which she ironically, is not ;). Our conversations, though infrequent, are generally quite lengthy and 2.5 hrs after of pure chatting I was FAMISHED! So into the kitchen I went to dig out the pudding (aka dessert) that M and I had made earlier today.

We followed the recipe his mum, in laymen’s terms, has called “tiramisu”. However, when I served this concoction/scientific experiment of a dessert to him he quickly renamed it “cow splat”. Why? Well, take a look at this beauty.

I suppose we could’ve used it as fertilizer but seeing as we’re lacking a vegetable garden the cow splat went into our bellies instead. And dear lord, was it ever yummy!

I’m not sure where in the process we went wrong…making tiramisu is fairly straight forward (so I thought) and the appeal of making it came from:

a)      The lack of ingredients we’d need to buy (just lady fingers and mascarpone, we already had eggs, coffee, sugar, and chocolate)

b)      The fast prep time (no baking involved! I thought I was saved this time…tiramisu just involves some whipping, stirring, and layering really)

But somewhere along the road of Italian cooking we went somewhere drastically wrong. Where egg whites should have been whipped into beautiful peaks that look like the Swiss Alps, we got something that looked like the polluted froth of Lake Ontario. Where the final mixture should have been firm like my stomach, we got something as runny as my sister’s nose the first time she saw Bambi. But I am a true believer in second chances (this is only true for food, I’m not as lenient when it comes to people) and wanted to try to salvage the remains of our disastrous creation.

So what did we do? Well there were three possible hypotheses in how to thicken up the diarrhea-like mess:

  1. Cook the mixture- I mean, usually when you heat stuff up it thickens a little, right?
  2. Add in flour or corn flour/corn starch- because again, this is the stuff you put in to give some strength and oomph to sauces…right?
  3. Throw in some bananas- it helps for milkshakes and I figured it could add a nice flavour to the dessert.

We went for option 1 and 3 and the result was a banana-flavoured custard.

Talk about a tiramisu of Titanic proportions.

Meh, to hell with it. I went on to finish my thang, dunked the lady fingers in espresso (and downed the remainders of the espresso, which gave me a nice little burst of energy), completed the layering process and stuck it in the fridge. I was hoping the frigid temperature would help in solidifying the liquid mess (I guess I’m a believer in third chances too??), but even that didn’t help. *sigh*. I served the dessert with forks, but a soup spoon probably would’ve been more fitting. There’s still a bit left. You know what? It’s going in the freezer, baby! Because tomorrow I can be guaranteed it’ll be hard as ROCK…like an ICE CREAM CAKE, and that- THAT you cannot go wrong with! Fingers crossed that 4th time’s a charm…