TisWas, Puchine & Cuba

As we all know, today is: never a day to miss coz, Saturday is Tiswas Day. WooHoo. Summer is over with as the rain has returned just in time to drench the great British public on a bank holiday weekend, naturally. Of course the sun is out now, just to lull you into a false sense of security, but mark my words, the minute you get those shorts and sunglasses on the heavens will open. This IS England afterall. We DO have traditions you know!

The plan then.. First off get the mop chopped. Long overdue a trimming, starting to get the shaggy dog look and the grey is showing through. Don't know why I don't get it cut during work time, afterall it grows during work time. Back to my favourite barbers who I've mentioned before, so I'm sat in the converted living room with 20 other blokes in need of tidying. He talks about having a new rule where customers should bring him a gift back from their holidays instead of talking about them all the time. One of them had brought him some cigars from Cuba. As he's of Irish decent I suggested I bring him some Guinness assuming I haven't drunk it first but he tells me he'd rather have puchine. He's very demanding for a barber who drinks meths.

How do you make the stuff anyway ? Well, it turns out that it's pretty simple (obvious if you consider who made the majority of it). You scrub and slice 5lb of potatoes, boil them in 1 gallon of water, then put them in a bucket and add 3lb of sugar (dissolved in part of the gallon) along with 1 camped tablet some pectin distorting enzyme and some citric acid. Next you simply leave this mixture for 24 hours before adding yeast and yeast nutrient. Finally stir daily for three days and transfer it into a clean demijohn. Seal it with an airlock and when the fermentation process has finished you just need to distil it. With a Still - wherever you get them from :-) because of course you can't distill alcohol without a rectifier's licence (according to the Alcoholic Liquor Duties Act of 1979) - oh bu**er.

Mop all groomed, Mrs G and I had a walk to town as I've found the long lost book token of Atlantis. Well I say I found it, actually it was Auntie S who found it in a bag at her house. Turns out it was the bag that had carried beer and wine to one of her soiree's. Bizzare! I'd been promising myself Mr Kermode's book 'It's's only a movie' so that worked out a treat. £9.99 in Waterstones. Couldn't find anything else to go with it though, so I've saved the rest for future use. Also decided on one of this Marks & Spencer's £10 for two meal deal things for dinner. Looks quite promising - will report back tomorrow on the results.

Lunch consisted of Cheese rolls followed by Mrs G nipping to visit S and daughter falling asleep in front of "Friday the 13th Part III in 3d". Youths have very strange ideas about what to see and when. But then of course they have some much choice now - something we never had back in the day. We were lucky if we could get a lift to a cinema that was showing something that hadn't been on for two years in the first place. She's very cute when seen dozing with 3d specs on. Bless her.

My thoughts have turned to holidays and where to go. Mrs G would be perfectly content to just go to somewhere on the Med' again, but I want something a bit more adventurous and have been considering Cuba. I guess the encounter with the cigars in the barber's reminded me of the fact so I'm off to do a little research into that, and see what's about. Of course it's a long old flight, but got to be more interesting than Europe (again) and of course is not particularly expensive either. On top of this, my geography of Cuba is non-existent, so I wouldn't have a clue where you should or shouldn't go. Clearly this is going to take a whole bunch of reading to figure out, but anything to keep me off the blabber of the election.... oooo.... careful.... I nearly slipped back into it there.... Far too self aware for my own good.

Final thought is horse racing. Cheltenham's last event of the season is one evening next week and I thought I might see if any of the lads are up for a little trip up there. Nine quid a ticket is a bargain, and would be an entertaining way to spend an evening for a change.


  1. Yep - you can't distill it but apparently freezing the potato wine and skimming off the liqueur is perfectly legal and less likely to blow up your garage.


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