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Three random things I learned, or remembered, today

Archive for November, 2007

Ludwig van Beethoven



Two things I learned about Beethoven today.

There is some evidence that listening to classical music may raise the mood of depressed patients. Beethoven’s 3rd and 5th piano sonatas were the pieces used in the study.

And, there is a great website for musicians dedicated to Beethoven.



Dropped Scones



I came across a local parish recipe collection. The women of the parish submitted recipes and the book was sold to raise funds for church roof repairs.

This little book probably dates from the late 1950’s or early 60’s.

There was a recipe for dropped scones (Scottish pancakes) from a 95 year old. I can remember her grand-daughter.

She was the only contributor whose age appeared after her name. This old lady would be over 150 years old if alive today.



4oz self raising flour
1 and 1/2 oz castor sugar
1/2 oz butter
1 small teaspoon syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
(it is emphasized that all the teaspoons should be small)
1 egg beaten with about half a cup of milk according to the size of the egg.


Mix dry ingredients in a basin.
Melt butter and syrup in a pan and add to dry ingredients with the egg and milk.
Mix to a smooth batter, and bake in a fairly hot greased girdle. (I thought it was griddle!)

Where have the saris gone?



Years ago I had several colleagues who wore saris to work. They always looked so elegant and calm somehow.

Yes, saris and calmness seemed to go together.

It struck me that saris have insidiously disappeared from the workplace. Why?

Then it struck me that it might take ages to get dressed in a sari in the morning, so I found a website explaining how to don a sari. The little pleats at the waist sound challenging first thing in the morning.


Christmas snow



As well as liking arctic photography, I love snow.

Here is a snow scene to get me in the mood for the Christmas countdown.

This year’s gimmick is to do all my Christmas shopping on the (a) internet and (b) a tiny little craft shop nearby.

If I do it on the internet I have about 38 shopping nights to Christmas, allowing for postage time. And no car parking.

If I go into town, I have only about 11 shopping days to Christmas, allowing for work.

So, the internet wins.

© Ajn |

Christmas countdown



23 October is the day I start thinking about Christmas.

Or should.

I haven’t.

So this year Christmas will probably be shambolic.

So here’s a Christmas tree to focus my mind.

© Photographer:Elena Elisseeva | Agency:

Journey by Starlight



This award winning blog looks fascinating.

“Journey by Starlight” is the untold story of Albert Einstein’s imaginary journey across the universe.

“This is the story of a great journey that started with a great thought. One day in 1895 a boy looked into a mirror and wondered what the universe would look like if he could travel on a beam of light. That sixteen year old boy was Albert Einstein and that one thought started him on the road to discover his Theory of Relativity.”


Fiori di Capri



I ordered some perfume from “Carthusia” in Capri and it arrived today. Cologne rather than perfume. One was “Fiori di Capri” and he other “Aria di Capri.”


Well, for some time I’ve felt I had a fragrance sensitivity which made me sneeze, caused puffy eyes and a very mild wheeze. Since I’ve never been asthmatic before, it makes me wonder how a truly asthmatic patient might respond to such a perfume sensitivity.

I never wear perfume now and miss it!

Many years ago I bought some “Fiori di Capri” while on holiday on the island and quite liked it. I realise now that this fragrance and “Aria di Capri” are the two that are made to the original monks’ recipe from centuries ago. Assuming this is the case, I reckoned they might be more chemical free than modern perfumes and be less likely to cause symptoms.

So, I’m trying them out to see.


Below is a link to the Carthusia Website (in Italian).