Tuesday, September 25, 2018

PHOOEY! I’M FEELING ENNUI; AND I’M NOT FLUEY!






Touch wood!  I’ve never ever had the flu.  I hope I’ve not blown my cover, and the status quo remains!  On we go!

Don’t shake your head.  Don’t even try making denials because you won’t be believed.
Every single, and married, one of us, young, old, and in the middle, has experienced feeling listless and/or dissatisfied at some time or the other - fleeting moments, though they may be. There are times such feelings of lethargy last longer, often for reasons we can’t put a finger on.  As the feelings are invisible and intangible, even if we did put our finger on them, we’d not feel a thing.

However, one’s languid indifference, in the majority of instances, is only a passing phase; a brief interval of feeling disinclined to exert energy towards anything, everything, and everyone... no favouritism shown. 

Don’t beat yourself up about your lack of interest or enthusiasm.  We can’t be wide-
eyed, bushy-tailed, full of beans (unless we’ve just eaten a bowl of baked beans or kidney beans), active, lively, high-spirited and alert all of the time.  It’s not natural. 
Being continually stimulated and invigorated would be exhausting, to say the least - not only to one’s own self, but to those around us, as well.  

Feeling listless doesn’t necessarily mean we’re bored.  Boredom is an over-rated, often over-used word.  It is admissible to experience a bit of “off time” every now and then. 

Boredom isn’t necessarily part of the equation. 

The chilly mornings we experienced during winter encouraged me to be listless, happily without apology.  Disinterested in what was going on in the outside world, I was more engaged in remaining snuggled under the warm bed covers as long as I felt like doing so – no excuses offered.  Not dissatisfied with my decision, my two furry mates didn’t protest.  In fact, they encouraged my behaviour.

When in the presence of others you’re feeling a little languorous you are allowed to “put on a front”, otherwise known as “a happy face”; a pretence.  

For your own sake, it’s probably best you do. There is nothing quite as bad as being in the company of a clone of Sad Sack, the morose comic book character of years gone by.  

Better still, the best place to be if you’re feeling down-in-the-dumps is either keep to yourself, or visit the dump, rather than dump your feelings of gloom and doom onto those around you,

If you find yourself in the proximity of a person prone to sharing their lassitude, and you sense clouds of boredom descending upon you 10 litres of strong, caffeinated coffee with one kilogram of sugar added won’t stop you being dragged down with them.   

Take my advice! Invent a polite, believable excuse, and hightail it to the hills, or to the dump, as quickly as you can without a backward glance.  It has been my good fortune each time I’ve visited the local dump lately to have come across pleasant gentlemen who willingly help me unload my load, without me having had to dump my load on them. 

There is one particular woman here on the hill I try to dodge when I see her headed my way.  Unnoticed, she succeeded in creeping up on me a while back as I was loading my grocery purchases into the boot of my car.  

Caught by surprise, realising I was cornered with no possible escape route within reach, silly me, not thinking, asked, “How are you?”

Oh! Dear!  I do know better than to ask.  The floodgates opened.
  
Fifteen minutes later....having spent those minutes just nodding or shaking my head, not able to get a word in sideways or lengthwise....I heard the whole medical history of her and her husband – all of which I have heard previously over the years.  It beggars belief she and her husband are still alive for her to tell the tales!  

Her father had been a doctor, and she had been a nurse, so a vast range of medical terminology is always thrown into the mix to make matters worse!   

She is a nice enough person.  I don’t mean to come across as sounding mean, but suffice to say, I am not the only one who dodges her.   She has a similar affect on others.   

The reason given above is why I don’t encourage a friendship.  It is why, when our paths do accidentally cross, I try to remember not to ask the question...”How are you?”

A sensible way of understanding what is going on when you’re feeling lethargic and disinterested is to tell yourself you’re taking time out to smell the roses, even if there are no blooming roses blooming.  Roses aren’t the only blooming flowers worth smelling. Flowers aren’t the only things worthy of our nasal olfactory abilities. 

Add fresh fruit to the list.  Freshly-cut grass, and rain showers (more please) settling dust alert and satisfy our sense of smell.  Just ask our struggling Aussie farmers.  Let’s keep supporting them.  In dire straits, they need our support, now and always.  We need them...we depend on them. There’s nothing better than Aussie grown and produced.  

Oh! Yes! The aroma of onions frying; of freshly-baked bread: curry, or a hearty stew simmering on the stove top; a roast roasting; the scent of cakes or biscuits in the oven -wafting through from the kitchen will stir one’s mood in the best of ways. 

Make sure you leave the windows open, to allow inertia to escape. 

On we go...spirits and energy once again lifted.  It takes very little...just a word, a smile...and the tantalising aroma of home-cooking.

(Ennui...pronounced...”ŏn-wē′, ŏn′wē”:   Meaning – Listlessness from lack of interest; boredom)

Fragrant Lamb Curry: Heat oven 180C. Separate coriander stalks and leaves of small bunch; finely chop stalks. Put stalks, 500g lamb fillet, cut into chunks, 2 halved, sliced red onions, a large chunk of ginger, finely grated, 2 sliced red chillies,  320ml coconut cream, 400ml chicken stock, 2tsp cumin seeds, 2tsp ground coriander, 2tsp ground fenugreek, 1tsp ground cardamom and 1-1/2tsp turmeric in ovenproof pot; mix well. Seal with foil; cover with lid. Cook 1-1/2hrs. Serve sprinkled with coriander leaves, and with basmati rice and chapatis.  
Herb-Crusted Roast Rump: Pre-heat oven 200C. Mix 2tbs each roughly chopped parsley, thyme and rosemary, 2 crushed garlic cloves and 4tbs olive oil to form a paste; evenly rub herb mixture over whole 1-1/2 to 2kg rump roast; season.  Place beef in roasting pan; bake 30-35mins.  Reduce temp to 180C.  Place 2 bunches vine cherry tomatoes around roast. Sprinkle with 4-5tbs balsamic vinegar and a little olive oil.  Return to oven; bake 20mins for a medium roast.  Serve with roast vegies, including roasted red onions.

Coffee Cake with Cappuccino Butter-Cream: Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.  Put 200g butter, 200g golden caster sugar, 200g muscovado sugar and 250ml water in a pan; heat gently until the butter has melted. Remove from the heat and stir in 250g S.R flour, 3-4tbs instant coffee, pinch of baking powder, 2 eggs and 125 soured cream. Mix to a smooth batter. Pour into a lined 20 x 30cm cake tin (leave some baking paper overhanging to help lift the cake out, once done). Bake 25-30mins, until a skewer comes out cleanly. Cool, then lift out. Make icing: Gradually beat 250g icing sugar into 125g room-temp butter, along with 1tbs instant coffee mixed with 1/2tbs boiling water.  Spread all over the cooled cake; dust with cocoa powder.


38 comments:

  1. I am times answer the phone to my mother and automatically say, Hi, how are you. I then kick myself. While it makes no difference in the long run, it gives her a free kick to start on what is wrong with her. I usually drift off, thinking about something else. The reply to how are you should be no longer than a sentence or two.

    I like to refer to feeling of listlessness or dissatisfaction and feeling a little blue. In may case, it never last more than a few hours and is quite different to feeling stressed.

    Can I add freshly ground coffee to your list of good smells? Tea even. That can smell very nice.

    My favourite curry is a sweet curry made with barbeque lamb chops, which I think is only sweetened by adding sultanas. Since I don't cook it, I don't really know.

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    1. Hi Andrew...Yes...I agree...the aroma of freshly-ground coffee is delicious! I love the smell of freshly-ground coffee!

      Chutney added to curry is a top additive, too; as is chopped banana...for sweet curries.

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  2. Ah, I also like brewing coffee smells. And sweets being made in purified butter.

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    1. Welcome, Romance Book Haven...it appears we three are like-minded!

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  3. I've had several bouts of ennui myself this year. I close the doors and settle in with a pile of books until I feel like getting out in the world again.

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    1. Hey River...me, too...it's either a book with me, or bingeing on Netflix, Stan or Foxtel Now....with no guilt attached!

      Thanks for coming by. :)

      Delete
  4. My standard replies to "How are you" are "Doing well, by God's grace" or "God is good." The first means all is well, the second means ask if you want to know what needs praying over. What needs praying over will not exceed one sentence unless you ask for more detail.

    Brevity was learned by my own asking of the question to the wrong people.

    As for ennui, not so much lately.

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    1. Hey messymimi...my reply is always, with a smile, "I'm fine, thanks!" Or..."Great, thanks". Replies to that effect. Short and sweet. :)

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  5. You wee loading your grocdries and it didn't occur to you to say, " I'd love to stand and chat a moment but I have ice cream here and I don't want it to melt."? Well then......

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    1. Hahaha! Delores...she snuck up behind me....I didn't see her coming. To my detriment...my good manners taught to me when I was a kid automatically stepped in...and I was sucked in! lol

      There is no stopping that woman once she gets started on her current, past and future health issues...all else is of no importance! Thanks for coming by. :)

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  6. Mustn't Grumble! Had that song on my blog! That recipe for roast rump sounds so good. ☺

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    1. Hey there, Kay....the roast does look hoof...it might just have to be on my menu soon...not today, though. Today I'm making guacamole and feasting on that.

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  7. I think being in that sort of "funk" allows one to think and look forward and take stock of what great important things you care about in your life. Boredom? I think that feeling should happen more often so that people, especially children, can think up ways to use their time and knowledge for something new and good.

    Can you get fresh fenugreek where you are? Sure wish I could. We love it. But, is it like oregano which seems to be more fragrant with the drying? I will try your lamb curry with some shanks in slow cooker.

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    1. Hi Peace Thyme...Yes...fresh fenugreek is available here. Most plant nursery worth their salt should have seedlings available for sale...or the seeds. Gardening sections of major supermarkets probably carry the seeds, too. Late spring to late summer is best for sowing the seeds. It probably is similar to oregano re becoming more fragrant upon drying.

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  8. Lamb Curry
    Roast Rump
    Coffee Cake

    A fabulous threesome …
    Thanks.

    All the best Jan

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    1. Hey, Jan...food for thought and tasting there! Thanks for coming by. :)

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  9. We all deal with "the funk" differently. Yes, I like to be alone during that time, but know that if I want to feel better, I have to seek out other people to be with to get my mind off myself. I also find that doing for others, helps me very much. My mom had an expression, "I felt bad for myself because I had no shoes, then I met a man without any feet." She was a tough old bird and had no time for pity parties. She left me with lots of guilt.

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    1. Hi Arleen...I keep to myself the majority of times....by my own choice. I'm happy enough with my own company. I can get into enough arguments with myself without getting into them with others! :)

      I always say the best gift of all is the gift of giving...not receiving.

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  10. Cooler weather here, which does bring out the aromas of freshly baked bread or muffins in our kitchen. An apple fritter always can coax a smile out of me regardless of my mood. Your friend with the tales of medical woes reminds me of my own grandmother who would always offer a litany of her past and present health issues. She lived to be 99. So maybe sharing your blahs in this blog here will add a year or two for you.

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    1. Hey there, Dave! I don't share my woes with anyone...here or out there in the "real" world. No one is interested in my "blahs"...and I can't say I blame them...they have enough of their own to worry about than to have me bore them to death with mine. Anyway...I really don't have many "blahs"! lol

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  11. I do recall having caught the flue some many years hence but when exactly is not known, like nearly never.
    I like the Dozen Roses. Nowadays when I buy Roses for my departed Rosy I have to be satisfied with a metric doz (Ten)

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    1. G'day, Vest. I like that Dozen Roses image,too. I think it's wonderful of you to still buy roses for your Rosy. :)

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  12. Well, guess you should not visit my recent post where I talk about my chronic illness which is very mild and very annoying.

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    1. Uh-Oh! lol I just popped on over, Tabor. You seem to be on the mend...and your post wasn't long....so you get a free ticket return ticket to Hawaii!!!! :)

      It's a pretend free ticket!! Have a great time visiting the islands and your friends. I'm sure you will have a wonderful time. Take good care. And thanks for coming by. :)

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  13. This post reminds me of that old Dean Martin song:-

    When you're smilin', when you're smilin'
    The whole world smiles with you
    When you're laughin', oh when you're laughin'
    The sun comes shinin' through

    But when you're cryin', you bring on the rain
    So stop that sighin', be happy again
    Keep on smilin', 'cause when you're smilin'
    The whole world smiles with you

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    1. And way before Dean Martin stumbled on the song, Louis Armstrong recorded it it in 1929...Seger Ellis, a year before in 1928...and then later in the late 30s the wonderful Teddy Wilson and his orchestra, along with the legendary Billie Holiday recorded it. Teddy Wilson, of course, also was a member of the Benny Goodman Orchestra....and was playing with Goodman at the history-making Carnegie Hall Concert, featuring the one and only Gene Krupa on drums...the LP of which I still have...and still love.

      Jo Jones played drums in Wilson's band...and I also still have a Jo Jones LP....it was one of the first LPs, if not the first, I bought shortly after I started working at 15 years. I have always love the drums.

      I do love...and have always loved, music! :)

      Thanks for coming by, Yorkie...and stirring up some fond memories. :)

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  14. never had the flu, amazing, I hope you don't actually have it and if you do, you get well quickly, but listless, that is another story, I used to cringe as a younger person hearing all the older women telling of their diets and ailments, now I know where they were coming from and am less likely to criticize them.

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    1. 'Tis true, Linda...I do not lie. I have never had the flu...and touch wood I never do.

      My intention is not to criticise those with illnesses, aches and pains. I have enough aches and pains of my own...but there are some people who make their ailments, real or imaginary, the most important topic in every one of their conversations.

      I had a 21 year old lass working for me when I was managing the resort on Hinchinbrook Island...her fellow co-workers and I soon came to the realisation to never ask her how she was! She answered in minute, lengthy detail - telling her audience all about her aches, pains, groans and moans. It was all in her head. She had more wrong with her than a 90 year old, if her detailed moaning was to be believed!!! We soon learned not to ever say to her..."How are you?" :)

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  15. You're very lucky to have never had the flu - maybe you're one of the few unusual ones who are immune and should be offering yourself to medical researchers into the flu! The people I don't like much are the ones who seem to have no interests. I once met a woman who just agreed with everything everyone said, it was not unpleasant but was weird and you couldn't really have a conversation because she never said anything of her own, just agreed with everything. I had to spend several days in her company and it was fairly hard going. As I get older I'm less bored at hearing of peoples' ailments these days though. That says something about me, I think!

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    1. Hi Jenny...Yes...I am fortunate to never have had the flu. I don't treat that lightly.

      I know someone who will disagree even if he does agree with the base beliefs of the person with whom he is speaking. He disagrees just for the sake of it, I think. I find him very frustrating - and he is another person I dodge when I am able to do so! It safer...for both him and me! lol

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  16. I've had three bouts of 'flu in my life. They were very debilitating and had the curious effect of making me lose my ability to taste. Even now 18 years since the last bout I've a very poor sense of taste. I can smell some things - when my bread comes out of the oven/breadmaker for example. I'm fortunate in very rarely experiencing ennui. I am grateful for that and frequently add it to the list of things I appreciate when playing the Glad Game.

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    1. G'day, Graham....I can imagine how debilitating the flu must be and I thank my lucky stars that I've been spared...so far. I take nothing for granted....I hope I don't, anyway.

      I have my moments of ennui...but that never concerns me...I go with it...with the flow...read or watch a series or two.

      Nice to see you...thanks for coming by. :)

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  17. You've never had the flu? Wow.

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    1. Hi Sandra...Yes...I have never had the flu. Touch wood it stays that way. Thanks for coming by. :)

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  18. Did you bribe the flu Gods?

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    1. Yes....I bribe them, Nasreen...with loads of fresh fruits...inclusive of plenty of citrus...and fresh vegetables. :)

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  19. Replies
    1. Thanks, Linda...I've just been slack in the blogging department - becoming lost in other things....I intend to put up a new post sometime today... :)

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