Saturday 3 April 2010
A big bugger
15st 7lb, zero units. As soon as we arrived back in Northumberland on Wednesday I went to see our next door neighbours and reminded them about the lovingly home-reared chicken that they had kindly offered to give us at Christmas. It duly emerged from their freezer and sat defrosting on our dining room table for a couple of days, until we deemed it prudent to transfer it to the fridge. I would not have liked to have had a run-in with it when it was alive. A “big bugger” of 12lb, it had a surprisingly small breast balanced by a vast arse on top of clearly powerful legs. Perhaps it practised Thai kick boxing in its spare time. But it seemed just the thing to feed our guests at the lunch party we had arranged for today. Until Mrs H went down with acute laryngitis yesterday evening, and we had to cancel the bloody thing. We had no real alternative but to cook the giant chicken for ourselves, and I cracked open a fine bottle of Beaune to accompany it. Dust and ashes, I regret to report. Afterwards I took The Dog for a walk around the circuit that has been my favourite since I first moved here in 1988. I used to be able to do it comfortably in an hour – 55 minutes, if I was keen to get back to catch something on the telly. On the last two days it has taken me a full hour and a half. Today I managed it in about 70 minutes, so perhaps things are looking up.