Saturday, December 28, 2013


The night I dined on Italian sausage with Shanghai bokchoy over pasta, while coming home along Washington Street I saw a bat. And that made me rather happy. You see, bats are rare in the city. Years ago I had occasionally observed some of them swirling and swooping around the lanterns on a block nearby, but it has been a while.

And, as you might very well shper, the middle of winter is not optimal bat sighting time.

[The Italian sausage was grilled in a hot pan, then removed to cool and for the juices to "recompose". Slivered ginger was briefly seethed, then the Shanghai bokchoi was added in two stages to that pan; chopped pale crunchy parts first, shredded leafy parts later. After that the sausage and cabbage were briefly combined, with a glop of lemon grass sauce, manufactured by Lee Kum Kee in Hong Kong. Hot sauce (home made, no link) and a smoodge of shrimp paste were stirred in, and the amalgam was dumped over al dente rotini. I knew you were curious.]

I am quite fond of bats. Entirely aside from their lamentable habit of relieving themselves all over themselves, because they are hanging upside down, and too darn comfortable to get up (down) and go fly over some pigeons.

After seeing the little fellow flitting around, I stayed on that stretch of street for a while, hoping that he would return. Maybe he did, but if so, too quick and flickety to notice. Especially after the sun had set.

[People who read Chinese will understand why I wanted a peach while standing there, and also why I then remembered a story by the Master of the Five Willows (陶潛 Tou Chim, 365 – 427 CE) at that time.]

The weather these past few days has been very nice, for this season.
I've opened a tin of a pipe-tobacco I smoked at the same time last year, the fragrance of which one year or so ago prompted intense memory replays, made more vibrant because of the nicotine level. Greg Pease's navigator has increased in fruitiness after nearly twelve months of age, but the subtle sting of a fire-cured leaf is still perfumily present.
Nicotine is a stimulant, and works on the memories.
There is no connection to peaches.
But yet there is.

I prepared dinner long after coming home. I would have enjoyed another pipefull after that, but it was rather late. And, because of an apartment mate who is, remarkably, not into bats, I would have had to step outside to enjoy it. There is little fun wandering around in the chilly dark night, by oneself, and not even able to see the bats.
Though one might hear them.

NOTE: Readers may contact me directly:
All correspondence will be kept in confidence.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was a child of 13 when my father was working for the US Trust Territory on the island of Pohnpei. (now an independent country)I found fruit bat that was injured so we took it in and nursed it back to health and released it back in the wild. It was a very sweet and charming rodent with wings. I was very happy to see it go free.


Search This Blog


Important disclaimer or whatever: Because I am Dutch American, neurotic, and somewhere on the spectrum (Aspergers syndrome is quite common a...