Daniel Defoe’s ‘Journal of the Plague Year’ makes for startling reading these days. It is, in its own words, the “observations or memorials of the most remarkable occurrences, as well publick as private, which happened in London during the last… Read More ›
There is a short and moving story, written by Rudyard Kipling called ‘The Gardener.’ First published in 1925, it is the tale of Helen Turrell, a well-off respectable woman of country stock, and Michael. Though Michael is, ostensibly Helen’s nephew, she lets him call her ‘Mummy’ at bedtime, by way of a “pet-name between themselves.” Helen fears that he might reject her, when, aged ten, Michael got the idea that his civil status was “not quite regular,” but instead their bond grows tighter. Michael realises after all that there were plenty of his sort in English history.
Chilli peppers are surely one the world’s great mysteries. On paper, objectively, they are horrible. They burn the tongue, set the face on fire and bring to tears to the eyes. Yet, when experienced, they surely count among life’s truest pleasures. From hot wings to hot and sour soup, from pizzas and nachos to the very best curries, there is little, it seems, that cannot be made better by adding some variety of chilli pepper, the hotter the better.