Friday, January 15, 2016

British Mysteries, British Christmas Cake, and Quicksand - Anglophile Friday

(I suspect that this is all over the internet.)

This Anglophile Friday is a bit different from the usual. You'll see why, as you read on.

I got a text message from our daughter yesterday morning with a link to the above poster. It made me laugh, particularly because it reminded me of an event in our daughter's life, when she was about 6 years old.


Daughter
(Now mom to two of our grandkids)


The story is:  When she was little, we used to watch British mysteries together on Masterpiece Theatre, sharing a Bounty Bar (like a Mounds bar with thicker chocolate!). She knew the gentlemen pictured below quite well, having watched episode after episode of the Thursday night mystery program.

Albert Campion, Hercule Poirot, Sherlock Holmes (the real one)


Only a few of you might remember the Campion episode that involved quicksand, 'Mystery Mile.' (I suppose that it's possible that only a few of you even know who Albert Campion is.) Then there was the Poirot, 'Death in the Clouds,' where a poison dart shot someone in the neck. And finally (but there were probably several more that left an indelible impression upon our daughter), Sherlock Holmes. Remember the one where the man-turned-ape climbed up the outside of the house to get to the bedroom window?

Well, our daughter has never forgotten those mystery episodes.  So when she saw the quicksand poster on Facebook, she got a laugh out of it and sent it on to me.

But wait! There's more to this story:  One day, when she was little, we had friends visiting. It must have rained a lot prior to their visit, for the ditch alongside the driveway was wet, soggy, and muddy, with a little standing water in it. The little boy visiting, along with our daughter, were playing in that ditch and suddenly her mud boots (wellies) were STUCK, so that she couldn't move. The little boy came running back to the house, crying and frantic, convinced that our daughter was going to die because she was 'stuck in the quicksand!'  I ran to rescue her from certain death, (because we KNOW there is quicksand in NW Wisconsin, alongside driveways with shallow ditches, right?)  Poor kid. She was terrified. Thanks to Albert Campion and the bad guy, Alistair Baba.  (I'm not taking the blame here.)

And now you can see why we both laughed at the quicksand poster. We could have written that ourselves!

***

And now, what you've been waiting for:

Occasionally, the postman brings something besides bills.


I received a package in the mail from the friend of a blogger friend. Evidently, she's quite a baker (and has an online presence and on Facebook as 'Cakes by Mother.')  What a fun surprise! A piece of authentic British Christmas cake, all the way from northern England.


In my excitement, I grabbed the bit of orange frosting at the bottom of the box and popped it into my mouth before I realized that it was poor Frosty's nose. The whole thing it just so cute and clever!  The cake was delicious, and had a generous layer of marzipan. The more marzipan, the better, in my opinion. Don't you love the sweet smile on Frosty's face!



It was a lovely cake, and quite amazing that it survived the trip so well.  Thank you, Ruth! :-)


***

For those of you who would like to see the QUICKSAND portion of Mystery Mile (and who wouldn't!), it begins at 47:00 and is just a few minutes long.




***



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Have a great weekend, everyone!


Judy

30 comments:

Elizabethd said...

I did laugh at the quicksand story!
There is nothing quite as good as a proper English Christmas cake. I didn't make one this year.

Sandi said...

Haha! This made me laugh. There were a lot of old shows that used quicksand. Gilligan's Island comes to mind. :)

Mike @ A Bit About Britain said...

And there I was, thinking that the quicksand memory was something to do with a Peanuts cartoon. Wait - we're swapping cultures!!! Now I'm feeling guilty for not sending you any cake - if I'm careful, I can make ours last until March...

podso said...

Fun post and great photo of your daughter! And a wonderful package to open. It looks like it made it across the miles quite in tact.

Ann W said...

That is a hilarious story! What a cute picture also! Have a great weekend!

Jacquelineand.... said...

There is quicksand in Indiana, believe it or not, and my twin brother got stuck in a bit on our family farm.
After I stopped laughing I went to fetch help; took a while to stop laughing!

Your Christmas cake looks lovely and oh so yummy.

Sandra said...

I went to 47 and watched the quicksand part.. the only quicksand i saw as a child was in my Tarzan comic books and read about it in all the books i read. we had no TV until 1959 when i was 15 and that only had 3 channels.

eileeninmd said...

Good morning, I love the photo of your daughter and the quick sand story is cute. Your cake and snowman look yummy. Happy Friday, enjoy your weekend!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

You ATE his nose! lol I think he is smiling at YOU! What a sweet gift and I see that it is quite cold where you are today. It's WINDY here this morning but in the 60s. Enjoy your day! Hugs, Diane

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

What a great post about bonds of daughter and mother. I love it when my daughter or son share a bit from the past that we both laugh or sigh over. Quicksand..Love it! Enjoy your weekend, Judy! xo ♥

Dicky Bird said...

Quick sand was in north central Wisconsin when I was a kid too...I feel bad for children these days...where is the imagination? I actually had a rowdy bunch at 4-H the other night. I said "let's play Captain May I" No one...not even the parents...knew what that was...I'm getting old. It was a HUGE hit! They all loved it. If you are a mama of "littles" - encourage imaginative play!

Pamela Gordon said...

I love the quicksand story Judy as it reminded me of my fear of quicksand after watching old westerns in the 50's and 60's. :) And we sure don't have quicksand in our neck of the woods either. How nice to get such a lovely treat in the mail all the way from England! I agree that the more marzipan (or any frosting) the better! Have a lovely weekend.

Susie said...

Judy, Your daughter is the cutest thing. I loved that quicksand story so much. Those kinds of stories never get old. Yummy cakes in the mail. Love that.Blessings for a great weekend, Stay warm. xoxo,Susie

Simply Linda said...

Thanks for the smiles....I remember those mysteries well. Have a beautiful weekend, friend.

TexWisGirl said...

too darn funny!

genie said...

What a great story. I was glued it til the end. I bet you were scared. I never thought there would be quick sand here. Scary. Love the shot of her hanging from the tree and I really love that cake and little Frosty.What a great surprise gift to get.

Arlene Grimm said...

I loved Peter Davison( one of my favorite Dr Who's) as Campion!! And hey, I want cake now!!

Terri D said...

This is such a great story!! How fun to have those memories! When I was a tween, I was convinced there were vampires. So funny how we are influenced by things.

Marcia said...

Speaking of mysteries we discovered the newest episodes of Foyle's War on Netflix. Watched the first one last night. Are you familiar with that one?

Vee said...

I do remember those PBS series; however, my fear of quicksand goes way, way back to those Tarzan movies with the real Tarzan.

John spent some little time, after my sharing this with him, that on construction sites great care is taken with cranes as they can get very stuck and buried, which reminds me that my car once disappeared in a church parking lot. He even read a sales pitch in our local sellers' magazine for crane pads 1 foot thick, four feet wide and from 16 to 30 feet long. So now I have had an education.

Oh those cakes are darling! What a thoughtful gift from Ruth all the way from England.

Now, thanks to you, I have started watching Monarch of the Glen and mostly because I found Richard Briers again.

Missy George said...

SO funny...great stories..Thanks for sharing...

Judy S. said...

Fun memories! Stay warm; I hear it's pretty cold in the Midwest now.

Carla from The River said...

Fun and I love the photo of your daughter.
Stay warm,
Carla

Cheryl said...

Great story, Judy!! Those mystery dramas can make a big impression on young viewers! (Bekah had to sleep in Kati's room for several months following a particular scene in a Poirot episode.) :)

Jenny Woolf said...

The cake looks perfect! Your daughter really shouldn't go to Morecambe Bay in Lancs, where there is someone called a Sand Guide who helps walkers navigate the quicksands. Or at least there was one. I wonder if he is still there!

Mrs. Chrissy T said...

I love this. I am a huge British Mystery fan. What a treat to receive a piece of England goodies. They are beautiful.

pattisjarrett said...

Your package did travel well! Love the quicksand story. My daughter and I do the same thing when something triggers a memory like that.

Cakes by Mother said...

So pleased that the cake and 'Frosty' arrived in almost perfect condition..shame about the nose! I must admit I sent the package with some trepidation that it would arrive at all, let alone in such good condition. After hearing and reading about your love of most things British I thought you had to try a piece! I will enjoy looking at your recipes on your blogs now that I am following you. :)

J_on_tour said...

It was good to hear that the cake arrived and the pictures are great that go with the story. The cake seems to have gone down a storm here as it's nearly all gone.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Judy, I don't know how I missed this post before, but when I saw it listed beneath the current post I just had to check it out. I loved the shows you mentioned and agree with you that Jeremy Brett was "the real Sherlock Holmes." It was a different set of shows when I was a child that led me to believe quicksand was going to be a bigger problem in my life--quicksand seemed to make regular appearances in all sorts of TV series.

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