I have spent much of the day stretched out on the chaiselongue reading Tess of the D'Urbervilles in preparation for Friday's Book Group. It is a novel I know well, it having been one of my A Level texts, though I have not read it for twenty years. What strikes me now, which did not then, is how little Tess does for herself. She is done to, or is driven by the actions or suggestions of others. And perhaps this is the point. Afterall, the gods end their sport with Tess in the closing lines, suggesting she has no control. But this has nothing to do with Prune & Parsnip Wine, which I started today - 1st January.
I have chopped up four pounds of prunes into small pieces and these are currently boiling in six pints of water. The bucket contains six pounds of sugar and a pound of chopped prunes. Once the parsnips are soft (after at least 20 minutes simmering) I shall pour the liquid into the bucket, and then boil another seven pints of water to add.
Claire has just come to tell me "Your wine smells of everything that is evil about parsnips".
I added a pint and a half of tap water to Demijohn A and a pint to Demijohn B on 7th January.