Saturday, February 27, 2010

Udolpho, Wine, Sock of the Day

 I sort of wish I'd read The Mysteries of Udolpho when I was 12. That's how old I was when I first encountered Jane Eyre and Rebecca. Back then, I was romantically enchanted with brooding, passive/aggressive heroes. These days, I want to tell Jane and The Second Mrs. DeWinter to run like the wind, and find themselves someone previously unmarried, with a sunny disposition. That's how I feel as I listen to TMoU (and listen and listen and listen- I'm on the 19th audio file, each running from 20-40 minutes long, and we're just now getting to some mildly foreboding stuff).

We're supposed to love Valencourt, and root for his and Emily's eventual Happily Ever After, but really- his passive is annoying (accusing Emily of not loving him because she won't elope), and his aggressive is worrisome (he's more than a little stalkerlicious). And he's massively stupid, sending letters openly to Emily, begging her to sneak away from her cruel Auntie, knowing full well that Auntie Cruel, and her ooky new Italian husband, both hate him, and that they inspect every piece of paper that comes into the palacio.

Of course, sweet, faintable Emily seems short a few bricks herself. And if she thinks that Valencourt isn't skulking along behind them as they travel The Alps (gorgeous scenery), she's even dimmer than I think she is.

But they're in Italy now, and I think we may finally be getting to some mysteries. And maybe we'll finally meet (or at least hear about) Udolpho.

On to less mysterious subjects (though so far, nothing could be less mysterious than The Mysteries of Udolpho). The 3 gallon batch of Chablis is in the carboy for secondary fermentation.

And we started a 3 gallon batch of Barbera, which is sort of an underdog red varietal. I'm more of a white wine person (and a sweet white wine person at that), but I like the occasional red, and we like to have it on hand for company, and for gifting. This is the first time we've tried Barbera. I'll be curious to see how it goes (and tastes, of course).

Next in the primary, a 5 gallon batch of Gewurtztrauminer, one of my favorite wines. And for the record- we don't make this many wines every year, just when we're in the mood. Evidently, we're in the mood.

We get all of our wine making supplies, including grape concentrates, from Northern Brewer, btw.

Sock of the Day- my friend Melanie gave me the yarn for these socks a few years ago. It's Marks & Kattens Clown cotton/wool sock yarn (and it took me about a dozen searches to find it- I lost the bands long ago, and didn't remember the name exactly enough for Google). The good: the socks have worn pretty well (I had to repair the heels, but I have to do that with a lot of my socks), they machine wash and dry easily, they're not quite as warm as wool/nylon socks so they're nice for spring and early fall, they look good.

The bad? These suckers bled like a dying animal. The yarn was deep red and pure white when I knitted the socks. They're pink and pinker now. And for many months, I had to wash them alone because it took forever for the excess dye to wash out.

I'm perfectly happy to have pinkish striped socks that I can wash with the rest of my laundry, but that's not what I expected when the yarn arrived.


joannamauselina said...

1. Gewurtztrauminer is my favorite too.
2. Those socks, although not red, are really cute.
3. I warned you about Udolfo. Sooooooo long, and soooooooo slow. It's hard to imagine how it thrilled Catherine so.

Kathleen Taylor said...

joannam- yeah you did warn me. I'm enjoying the story, and it makes my treadmill workouts easier, but it would be nice if something happened (well, something is happening, the heroine is being whisked away from her lover, by a cruel relative and her creepy husband- but it would be nice if it happened just a bit quicker).