Today is Monday and I’m having a bad day of ‘mondiatis’. On top of my headache-is-me weekend, it’s a very cold and gloomy day today.
Thus, my list for DAY 17 will be all about things I love but can’t have today…
Hopefully, my readers can relate
I’ve been a coffee addict since very early age. It started as a cure for my low blood pressure.
And what a life turn it is that my blood pressure does not want to stay low anymore. It spikes all over the place in any given day.
Thus, doctor’s orders: NO COFFEE
Being human, we always lust for something we can’t or not supposed to have. Coffee is my biggest guilty lust
Every time I feel jaded. Every time I get stuck in a rut. Every time I feel like settling for something or other, I need London.
I go to Netflix and find Sherlock. Its opening credits are enough to save me from routine and settle-dom.
I do not know what it is about London. I guess it is a combination of things: its parks and Thames, its galleries and theaters, its Coventry Gardens and Piccadilly and definitely its anonymity and its snobbism of old and new, royalty and East End. It’s a volatile concoction that is just right for me
3) APPLES “Belij Naliv” (Early Gold)
Call me weird but this is ‘my damage’. These super tangy, whitish-green apples are the ‘apple of my eye’.
They are my childhood of climbing fences and ‘attacking gardens’, of garden duties set by my grandfather, of early apple harvest and new season baked apples. They are the smell and the sight of long days and white nights.
Unfortunately, these apples are rarity in Australia. Thankfully, a couple of green grocers in high Russian density suburbs felt sorry for us and found a secret farm. So, every year for a very short season in January-February, we, poor things, can enjoy something similar to the apples of our childhood.
If you blink, you miss. Then, it is a very long wait…
4) CAKE “PRAGA” (Prague)
Every person that I know has their own version of ‘real Praga’. There are as many as cities in the ex-USSR and as many as there are bakers and desserters.
My ‘real Praga’ comes from the days of famous and infamous hotel “Pribaltijskaja” (Saint-Petersburg) – one of the very few places in the USSR where this cake was made and sold to be enjoyed only for the ‘powers that be’ and foreigners.
My dad used to bring me a slice every now and then. Sometimes, he managed to bring a whole cake in a very beautiful box with slices individually wrapped.
The USSR collapsed. ‘Praga’ became accessible and widely-sold. However, none of the copies can compare to the original.
There are lots of wonderful and yummy cakes around, but I miss the one that does not exist anymore.
5) CHILDHOOD SCENTS AND AROMAS
Growing up I was lucky enough to live North-South and back again. I was born on the Baltic Sea. My first sights and smells were those of pines, and blossoming chesnuts, acacias and freshly mown grass, blossoming apple trees and real strawberries. Then, came the turn of amazing Riga coffee and cakes, burning smells of Ligo fires and sweet aromas of first deodorants and perfumes.
The other part of my childhood was on Dnestr river and by the Black Sea (Odessa). The smell of fried sunflower seeds (eternal doom for my parents), corn on the cob, crunchy shrimp in newspaper packets were part of seaside experience. But the smell of the warm, dark and addictive sea was overwhelming and alluring the most.
I remember the scents and aromas, the sights and attitude that goes with all of them. My Australian friends call me strange and laugh at me when I compare places and even cities in terms of smells and sights.
I say ‘feels/smells like home’ when I come back from Christchurch NZ in spring or Hobart Tasmania in summer. I am like a hound, sniffing out memories everywhere I go.
As you can see, my ‘lust’ comes in various forms and entities. However, it is all about sights, smells and feelings. I might be strange. I might have wild imagination and ‘tribal’ memory, but these are my things…