Sunday, 24 May 2009

Magic potions

Every family has them; a favoured 'cure-all' type drink that soothes the savage breast and restores one's inner world to equilibrium without recourse to the pharmacopoeia. A panacea to be applied as a first strike front line defence against every malaise of flesh and soul. Nothing fancy, but just one of those folk remedies to help the body fight all types of lurgi, dreaded or otherwise.

What with all the stresses and strains of immigration documentation, tantrums and maliciousness from elderly relatives; not to mention an up and coming French exam for Mrs S next week, sleep is becoming an increasingly rare commodity. She's restive and I end up with flailing elbows in my ribs (and other sensitive areas) at three in the morning. Then she's grumpy all day despite all my Machiavellian japes and capers designed to restore smiles to her features and thus a measure of domestic harmony so I can concentrate on my work. I can't ignore her when she's in a bad mood because that only makes things worse.

The Sticker clan all time favourite restorative has to be hot milk and honey (Or syrup) drunk just prior to turning out the lights. A teaspoon of honey (or syrup) in a mug, then boil some milk and stir into the honey / whatever. Paracetamol or Aspirin may be taken at the same time in case of feverishness, or just to send you off to a sound nights repose after a stressful day. It's surprisingly effective. Flu? Hot milk and honey at bedtime. Stressed out? Bubonic Plague? Ebola? (Well, maybe not) Hot milk and honey at bedtime. Rarely fails to bring at least a measure of improvement. As folk remedies go, it's a winner.

For more serious afflictions there is the 'hot toddy'; my version of which is 50:50 Jamesons and hot water to be drunk at a measured pace while still hot. The theory behind this is that the hot water vaporises some of the alcohol while it is being imbibed allowing more ready absorption by the various mucosa; nose, mouth, throat, stomach. As a quick way of getting a concentrated hit of knock out juice into the system, it's quite effective. Some folk authorities will add honey and herbs to the mix, but for my side of the family it was always received wisdom that this a) Was rather gilding the lily, and b) Ruined the taste of the whiskey.

Thus it was that last night I dug into my armory of restoratives and went for the double barreled approach. Hot toddy followed by hot milk and honey delivered in quick succession.

Well it worked for me. Both Mrs S and I slept through in granite like repose from eleven last night till seven this morning. This morning I feel clear headed and alert, ready to face whatever rigours the day may hold. Mrs S will have her morning mug of tea shortly, dog will be fed and walked, and the project I have to deliver Monday morning will be operational and complete with bells and whistles.

Tote that barge, lift that bale. Yah mule.

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