the bread knife issue

second prize at the agricultural show

We called in to friends before lunchtime, on the way to foot our turf in the bog. We lingered and were asked to stay, we had brought a picnic intending to eat in the open but we shared it happily instead—home bread, tinned sardined from brittany, home soft goat’s cheese—, and left the bread knife behind. We missed it for breakfast, dinner and tea, every day. Without this enforced separation which lasted a good few weeks would we really have noticed how much we loved our daily bread knife ? The ones we flirted with in its absence, acquired like most things in this house from charity shops, were too sharp, too efficient, too threatening, compared with the gentle efficient bonhomie of our own. When L on a subsequent visit remembered to pick it up, the hosts displayed a near ignorance of its presence, and were surprised to find it in their cutlery drawer. It had gone into the dishwasher and its handle looked almost bleached. Not everyone, we realized, imbued their relationship with their kitchen implements with as strong feelings as we do. And we do. How we do.

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