The benefits of lipstick

Last night Jonathan, Ferdinand and I drove up into the Umbrian hills above Bastia Creti, to go to a party. Even with the party balloons that marked the way, we covered most of the narrow white track roads around the house to find it; always the best way I think to get to know an area, especially if you are a bit timid about parties to begin with, and a bit worried about not owning an iron and the state of your party clothes. I have to remember to buy some really bright lipstick to distract people’s attention from my neck down.
Within minutes after arrival, there was confusion about what to do with piles of radicchio and fennel, so I started cooking. I prefer it. Give me a knife, and I can talk all night. As soon as I am just a guest, it is easier talking to a clam that doesn’t want to be cooked, than me. There were already steaks and sausages on the woodfire outside, so I chopped each of the lettuce and fennel heads into quarters, suggested rubbing the grill with olive oil, grilling the whole lot, and once they were off, drizzling them with my favorite flavor enhancer, more olive oil, and salt. You can oil them before hand as well, but it tends to make the fire hover near your eyelashes.
I don’t remember eating anything but strawberries the size of marbles and sweet as
first kisses.

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