Thursday, 11 September 2014

Not Winning but Taking Part

It was the local Produce Show on Saturday.  Normally, it wouldn't have dawned on us to take part but the organiser had been to dinner, tasted S's bread and then applied pressure for him to submit an entry.  So, he's been planning and practising for a few weeks.  By Friday, he had bought in extra supplies of flour, yeast, honey, walnuts and dates and spent the afternoon and evening making bread.  Still up and running at half one in the morning, he made four loaves: two walnut, date and honey and two multi-grain.  We chose one of the multi-grains for entry as, although the walnuts taste great, they don't look that beautiful.

Not Budget Day But Produce Show Day!

Entries were being accepted between nine and eleven.  We headed up just after ten with the completed admission form.  We were sent to put the bread on the appropriate table and so had a quick look at the other entries.  "Hang on!  Look at this stuff!  We can do as well as this!"  We raced back home and hastily labelled up and prettified a jar of mum's plum jam whilst ramming some cut dahlias into a jar.  We just made it back in time, ten minutes before entries closed.

The Show opened to the public at two o'clock, after the judging had taken place.  S got third place for his bread.  An outrage.  However, as he noted, he did seem to get the popular vote, with many viewers admiring the look of his loaf (far right below in the E44 section).  Thankfully (thinking of my poor waistline), he gave the winning specimen away to an impressed neighbour.

The Competition

Third Prize for the Bread
Mum got a third for her jam.  An outrage.  Nicely sharp and nicely jammy.  It should have won.

Third Prize for the Jam

And I got a first for my dahlias.  An outrage.  I had plonked them in a weed-free bit of garden, then left them to it.  I had then cut them hastily and plonked them in an unsuitable vase.  Some of the entries suggested that other people had tended their dahlias lovingly, put effort into their arrangement.  And I, with my fast and furious flower arranging, had taken the prize.

First Prize for the Dahlias!

It was de Coubertin of Olympic Games fame who made the point about it not being about winning but taking part.  Not in this house.  We are already planning our attack for next year.  There was no heaviest apple, for example.  We could have won that.  And only one entry in the Leeks Section.  My grandad, the prize leek grower, must be turning in his grave.  We can make cakes.  And scones.  And he or she who gets the most prizes wins a cup.

Game on.

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