Panda is very alert these days. He spends most evenings running furiously up and down the length of the house, barking at sounds both real and imagined. When I finally get him to settle down in bed, he tosses and turns, wriggling his body into the funniest contortions. In the mornings, he wakes up precisely at six, like an alarm goes off inside him. I'm usually half-awake and dreading what is coming. First I hear him get up and stretch. He takes his time with that. Then he yawns, shakes himself and walks over to me. I hear his nails clicking on the floor just before I hear a shrill bark, right beside my ear. It is time to get up.
We went for a long walk this morning. Panda sniffed about and glared at cyclists while I listened to execrable music on the radio. When we got back, he drank a lot of water and collapsed behind the sofa to await breakfast. He's very passive-aggressive about breakfast. He never condescends to sit outside the kitchen in wait, like most dogs would do. Instead he glares at me reproachfully from behind the sofa cushions while I sip my coffee.
And sip my coffee I did, while I read the paper leisurely. I already knew what I wanted for breakfast.
After about half an hour, I was finally hungry and so I turned on the oven. I'd already bookmarked this recipe and I had a suspicion it was going to be very very good.
In all the southern American romance novels I've read, there's usually a scene when the heroine bakes biscuits for the hero. It is generally when he falls in love with her. I turned on the oven, measured and kneaded. I only made a third of the recipe because it was just me for breakfast. Panda came to observe, staring stolidly at me from the kitchen door. He still had a bit of a mustache left behind by his breakfast of bread and milk. Every so often, he would stretch out a pink tongue and lick his lips.
I rolled my biscuits by hand and set them in a pan. The pan slid into the oven and then I returned to my coffee and paper. Twenty minutes later, they were ready, crusty and fragrant. I ripped them in two, and they had white, feathery, lightly steaming insides. Suddenly eager, I dragged a piece through a pool of honey and ate it, and it was exactly like I'd imagined. So then I fixed myself a plateful, poured a fresh cup of coffee, and returned to my paper.
PS: I'm also including a picture of an ever-so-pretty salad I made a while ago. I photographed it and meant to tell you all about it, but now I've quite forgotten what I intended to say.