Archive - February 2014

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I, Juggler
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Why baking during the weekend is a no, no for me.

I, Juggler

Plantains are sizzling quite nicely in the pan and won’t start browning for about a minute or two. That’s just time enough to check on Chairman in the sitting room and set T straight on her next item of homework. A little while later as I flip each oblong-shaped piece over, my mind (and eyes) fleetingly stray to the dishes within arm’s length which I had temporarily abandoned in order to start lunch. No worries, I think, I’d finish them off while the plantains are getting thoroughly cooked. I put the frying fork down and make towards the sink. Then I stop, grab one of the stools in the kitchen and sit down. Sheesh! I was doing it again; doing more than one activity at a time aka multitasking, that which the corporate world thrive on (I think). However, it cannot take the credit for starting this hard — to — break habit; reading/writing in the loo many, many years ago comes to mind immediately. But honing the habit, a regular 8am — 5pm (and often times, longer) job did that perfectly. How many times did I simultaneously have a face-to- face conversation while on the ‘phone? Or type and send out a mail while listening to a recording to produce a report out of? Perusing a document while an interviewee stated his/her case was all in a day’s work too. Let’s not even go to what I did during meetings. I could be taking notes while working on my next project as well. Once after such, a colleague asked to look through my notes and was stunned to see, amongst that which I had written down, two pages of an article for the company’s newsletter I was compiling! I was a professional juggler but my act was on the ground, not in the air. It was an absolute thrill to include this trait in my resume. Invariably informing prospective employers that I could be a jack of two or more ‘trades’ and focussed on none. I took it off three years ago. Despite the mistakes I made while at”more

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Why baking during the weekend is a no, no for me.

  …because the children are around!   Chairman wants to know what everything! His little yellow fingers hover over the cup of desiccated coconut as he asks: ‘Mummy, what is this?’ I remove it from his reach just in time. Unfazed, he moves onto the raisins resting in a plate nearby. T wants to lend a hand! ‘Mummy, let me do it.’ She helps whisk the eggs while I pray she doesn’t spill them and, with me supporting her, sifts the flour. They taste most of my fruit and leave me short! More often than not, there’s always fresh fruit going into the cakes I bake except raisins and desiccated coconut. It’s while I’m dicing the apples that the children want some or when I’m about to mash the bananas that they appear with outstretched hands and toothy smiles. I don’t mind giving out my oranges because it’s usually the zest I need but would out rightly refuse to share the lime because I use both the zest and the juice. Nevertheless, they still get some of the fruit in sight. Energy which was supposed to be channeled towards the task at hand is expended being a drill sergeant! ‘Don’t touch anything!’ ‘Leave around the table!’ ‘Put the spatula down!’ ‘Didn’t I just say you should sit down?!’ ‘Don’t go near the oven!’ ‘No, you can’t taste the vanilla extract!’ The count and the countess! They help place the muffin paper liners and count them over and again until I’m almost dizzy just hearing them. T’s counting more than the available 12 muffin spaces while Chairman gets to 10 and starts from the top. The only time there’s some modicum of peace is when the batter’s in the oven and they are busy polishing off what’s left of it. Thankfully, they are only two of them; so T gets the bowl and Chairman’s content with the spatula. As I wash bits of batter out of Chairman’s hands, face and hair, I notice that soon he’d be as tall as the sink and I won’t need to help him reach the”more

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