Today is the last day of August. Can you believe September starts tomorrow? And is this the end of summer here?
Most of this month was sunny and warm, if not hot; we've had thunderstorms with hail and rain in between. Yesterday was so warm and humid, I didn't feel like going for my usual Wednesday evening run. The air felt as if you could spoon it. It rained during the night but at the moment does not feel much cooler, although it is supposed to get no warmer than 20 C (68 F) today as opposed to the 32 C (90 F) or so we had yesterday.
I guess a cool break this weekend will do us good, and apparently, we're in for beautiful late summer weather in September. We'll just have to wait and see!
August was a very busy month for me. Work picked up the moment I came back from my Yorkshire holiday, and there have been many things besides work: Three birthdays to celebrate (my Mum, a friend and O.K.'s Mum; it was his sister's birthday this month, too, but as it was during the week, I could not be there); walks and runs, barbeques, other meals and a trip to the cinema with friends, plenty of nice food and drink to enjoy. Train trips were often much longer than planned, and not always pleasant, but in the end I arrived where I wanted to be.
I took a few pictures with my mobile phone during the month. They are not brilliant but they offer some glimpses into what August was like for me.
You could easily mistake the above for a dish of plums - but they are not, they are blue potatos, grown by my Dad on my parents' allotment and cooked for me a few weeks ago by my Mum. They taste just like "normal" spuds, and they are blue throughout, not just on the outside.
The drink next to it is a very popular cocktail on Germany, and has been for years. I remember exactly where and when I had my first Aperol Spritz: At a friend's 40th birthday in February 2011. This drink was already firmly established then, but I had never tasted it before. It is based on Aperol, an Italian bitter orange liqueur. The glass is filled up with sparkling wine and soda water, some ice cubes are added and a slice of orange as garnishing. It is refreshing and not too sweet, and you can find it at nearly every bar, restaurant, festival or even beer tent here.
The above pictures were taken on the 14th of August from my office window at one of my customer's. I know you have not much to compare those hail stones to in terms of size, but trust me, they were about 3 cm or 1 inch, more or less the size of ice cubes to put in a drink!
It was so noisy we had to stop work and just watch the spectacular show out there. One of my friends who had parked her car in front of her house had it looked at for insurance claims, and it was classified as a total write-off due to it being totally covered in dents.
Torrential rain is falling as we speak, interspersed with lightning and thunder. It is 8 o'clock in the morning right now, and I shall wait a few more minutes before leaving for work.
Good-bye, August; as a month, you were very good to me!
Addendum: Here is a picture I took on August 15 from my kitchen window:
Also, in respone to comments below, my Mum told me the name of the blue spuds my Dad has planted. They are not Adirondacks, but Blaue St. Galler, "Blue from St. Gallen" - Saint Gallen being a place in Switzerland, and that is indeed where this particular kind was bred.
Speaking of my Mum, after a break of several months during spring and summer, she has now re-opened her Etsy shop (see left side bar of my blog). Just in case anyone needs warm socks or a woolly hat or mittens :-)
That hail is something else! As for Aperol Spritz, i will remember it next time I am in a bar, which isnt very often ...always like to try something new. I am not a great drinker and never have been so my aim is usually to find a drink I like and add it to my repertoire so I dont keep ending up having a naff old shandy! I hope you enjoy September.ReplyDelete
I am sure I will, Jenny - there are another two weeks off work waiting for me :-)Delete
Gosh. I don't fancy my car being dented like that but I rather think that my head (even with my hat on) would like it even less. I had never tasted Aperol until a few months ago. I might try the spritz.ReplyDelete
When that hail was clattering down, I was just glad it was still early afternoon - too early for me to be on my way home across the fields with nowhere to hide!Delete
Ah, Aperol spritz ! We discovered them on our recent holiday in Austria and Germany. Love them. We bought a bottle of Aperol from Duty Free on our way home. Love it mixed with Prosecco.ReplyDelete
Did you also try Hugo? I have all the necessary ingredients for that at home, too :-)Delete
Let's hope your September is as pleasing as your August was. Isn't it great to just be alive? That is easy to forget.ReplyDelete
Neil, I wake up every morning feeling grateful and glad to be alive and as well as I am. Steve's sudden death nearly 8 years ago made a real difference in that respect.Delete
September is starting well, with O.K. spending the weekend here with me, and our upcoming 2 weeks off together.
Maybe I missed it. Are you going on holiday somewhere together?Delete
Yes, we are - first a few days to Zurich and then a week of hiking in the Black Forest.Delete
Wow! You must read this that I just found...ReplyDelete
Your potatoes in Germany must be so very different from ours in America. I know that the ones in England are far superior to the ones we have here.
Your blue potatoes grown by your Dad must have tasted delicious.
You are the first person here to comment on the blue spuds, Kay - I was amazed that nobody else said anything!Delete
Thanks for the link :-) I knew that (the history, varieties etc.), but it is always good to be reminded.
The blue spuds were nice!
I'd never have guessed those were potatoes. I don't think I've ever seen any blue potatoes - or at least not THAT blue :)ReplyDelete
We had some rain here in August but nothing really dramatic. On the whole it was a good month to me too... Rainy days were spent looking back at (and blogging) my photos from the trip in July. (We were away four days but in blog time I'm still on day three!)
Like you, I make my trips last longer by looking through the photos I took, doing research on the places I've been to and writing up my blog posts.Delete
Good to know August was good to you, too!
I came to your blog via Pat - we live not far from Scarborough so I was very interested to read your comments.ReplyDelete
Hello mrsnesbitt! Thank you for popping over and leaving a comment, and welcome to my blog!Delete
I read your email with the comment that no-one had commented on the blue potatoes until Kay did. "That's odd" I thought "I know I did." So anyone who said in my recent posts that I must have a good memory was way off the mark. I read about the blue potatoes and that got me to thinking bout blue or purple carrots and off I went to Google blue potatoes. Having read about a chap in Poland growing them and calling them Adirondacks (a mountain range in the US state of Vermont) I wandered off on a Google trip. Then I must have gone off and done something or made coffee. When I eventually got back to the post I do remember seeing what I took to be a finished comment that I hadn't sent. So I sent it. With no mention of blue potatoes. Silly me ARADD strikes again.ReplyDelete
You have certainly made up for the "non-comment" about the blue spuds now - and taught me something new at the same time! For me, Adirondacks are a type of chair; I didn't know the chairs were named after a mountain range, and even less so did I know that a species of potatoes goes by the same name.Delete
I like the look of your Aperol Spritz. A food magazine I was recently reading was telling you how to make one and I remember commenting to John that is looked delicious. I hope they become popular here too! I thought your potatoes were some kind of purple ice cream. I would never have guessed they are spuds! I'm glad August was good to you, I hope September is the same. xReplyDelete
Thank you, Gillian! So far, I can not complain - September was off to a good start, and I have two weeks off from next week onwards, which I am going to spend with O.K. :-)Delete