2. One year Douglas brought a mango fool to the New Year's Day Feast of Friends. I asked what utensils it required, meaning "Teaspoons or tablespoons or dessert forks?". Douglas looked thoughtful for a second and replied, "Bouillon spoons". I did not own 16 bouillon spoons and we were forced to settle for cream soup spoons.
3. It was slow-going and labor intensive, but I managed to acquire 16 assorted silverplate bouillon spoons. I laid them out all nicely when setting up for the next New Year's Day Feast of Friends, but nothing that year required their use. I nonetheless proudly showed them to Douglas, which yielded that same thoughtful look.
-"Would you like me to find a set of bouillon spoons for you?", I asked.
-"No, no, don't spend money like that."
-"I almost never see them, but when I do see them they sometimes cost very little."
He dismissed this as too much trouble, but I saw that look and I took note.
4. It was slow-going and labor intensive and I was not the winning bidder on many eBay auctions ("No, no, don't spend money like that"), but in time I purchased a very nice simple silverplate set of eight bouillon spoons for a notably reasonable price.
5. Lynn and Tim have an apple tree in their yard that sometimes produces great quantities of irregular tart wonderful apples, but they all come at once. There are no ripe apples, then there are countless ripe apples, then there are only windfalls. Lynn and Tim have been known to distribute bagsful of apples at various Morris team practices, during that momentary season of availability.
6. Two weeks ago, at the first Border Morris practice, I gave Douglas a set of eight bouillon spoons. I'm not sure he remembered our conversation of long ago, but he was quite touched.
-"You didn't spend too much on these, I hope."
-"Oh no," I assured him in this case as I have for other cases in the past, "I spent more for postage than I did for the spoons." Which is either true or very nearly true.
-"Do you know what you deserve by way of thanks?" Douglas asked.
-"Bouillon?" I suggested.
-"No, ice cream," said Douglas the skilled and original ice cream maker. "Apple Calvados ice cream. You eat ice cream, don't you?"
7. The other day Stephen Parker, my neighbor and landlord, stood in my kitchen and explained to me in great excited fond detail how you make a tarte tatin. Stephen is a fine amateur baker, and sometimes he gets a notion for a particular treat like this. You know that on the next free afternoon the smells of said item will come wafting through the building.
8. Last Sunday Stephen Parker went to visit Douglas. Lynn and Tim must have been there as well, or at least have been by, because he returned with many apples and a quart of apple Calvados ice cream that Douglas had made for me from Lynn and Tim's apples. I was not home at the time so the ice cream went into Stephen's freezer.
9. On Monday evening Stephen Parker walked down the back stairs and knocked on my kitchen door. He presented me with a quart of apple Calvados ice cream, a very nice note from Douglas, and a slice of tarte tatin that used the same apples as the ice cream, suggesting that the matchup would likely be good.
10. At the end of the evening on Monday I sat down in my comfy living room chair and ate a slice of amazing tarte tatin with a generous scoop of rich creamy tasty apple Calvados ice cream on the side.