The figs on the tree next to the cottage are plump and ripe. We can’t possibly eat all the bounty this tree has provided so I decided to make jam today.
We went to the Casino supermarché to pick up the few ingredients I needed. This supermarket provides miniature grocery carts for children. As I rolled my cart through the aisles, I caught sight of a father shopping with his two young sons….Dad carried a grocery basket while both of the boys pushed these little carts…..taking turns carefully placing the items on Dad’s list in one of their baskets. We met in the produce aisle when one young son….patiently waiting behind Dad….was blocking my way. French parents have an uncanny ability to get their children to behave without saying a word. This father, with an almost imperceptible motion of his head, let his young son know that he was in my way. The young boy….perhaps six years old….looked over his shoulder and saw me. His eyes became wide as he said, “Oh, pardon, Madame” and quickly moved his little cart out of my way. French children have a sweetness and innocence that continually enchants and delights us.
While in the Produce section, Craig eyed some great looking celery. Celery in France, used more for cooking than snacking, is usually too tall and “bushy” for our American tastes….but today, it looked perfect. Craig chose a bunch and took it to a scale. In
France, you weigh your own produce….you place it on the scale, enter the item’s code and and a scannable bar code prints out on a sticker that you place on the produce bag.
Well, the scale Craig chose didn’t print the sticker…..and he didn’t think to try another scale…..so our checkout was stalled when a young clerk had to take our celery back to the Produce section, weigh it, get the sticker and return to the register. As we waited for the young man to return, the line behind us grew increasingly longer….one, two, three people….then four, five, six…..all wondering what blockhead would come to the register
without weighing his produce. For the second time in less than a week, Craig caused a French traffic jam.
With our heads hung low in shame, we left the supermarket and returned to the cottage to make the jam.
I chose a recipe that includes a little orange and a light sprinkling of spices. It was easy to make and filled the cottage with a deliciously sweet, ambrosial aroma (for the recipe, click here: Spicy Fig Orange Jam ).
“No greater thing is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig, I answer you that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen. ” ~ Epictetus