The British Transport Police has just become the first UK police force to launch a...read more
Daughter three is still in full autumnal celebration, having decorated her entire room with pumpkin shapes. She has gone pumpkin-tastic and has been researching pumpkin recipes. All of them require something called pumpkin puree.
Daughter three had discovered that the only place that you can get pumpkin puree is Waitrose, a shop which is generally out of our price range. There is not a Waitrose near us so I drove them half an hour away and we entered the brightly lit supermarket. It was full of stuff we have never even heard of. Daughter two’s eyes opened wide. “Look, mum. Linda McCartney does pulled pork vegetarian burgers,” she announced. Daughter two is vegan. She checked the ingredients. All vegan, apart from honey.
“I don’t think honey matters, mum. People ask me if I worry about stepping on ants and I’m really not that extreme. Ants are not animals,” she stated. I made the case for bees being one of the most important insects on Earth. It was an odd situation because I have spent the last few months worrying about the whole vegan thing. Daughter two was too excited about the pulled pork burgers to worry about the bees, though.
We searched the aisles for pumpkin puree and asked various Waitrose people. One said they didn’t have any. Another thought it was in the tinned fruit section. We couldn’t see it. “Wouldn’t mango be more or less the same?” I asked daughter three. “I think it’s more or less the same colour.” There was a tonne of things with mango in them. When did mango get so popular? Daughter three was not convinced. I scoured the baby section. Surely one of those organic companies had considered pumpkins?
Daughter three was looking slightly crushed. She first raised the Pumpkin Puree Question last year after tasting a Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte. This quest has been an enduring one. I suggested pulping an actual pumpkin or Ebay. Daughter three looked sceptical. Suddenly, her eyes alighted on a Dolmio pasta sauce thing. “I’ve been looking for this all my life,” she said.
We left puree-less, but with Linda McCartney burgers and Dolmio pasta sauce. It may have been the whole pumpkin experience that pushed me over the edge. On the way home my head began pounding. Daughter two has had a cold all week and coughed dramatically into my ear around Tuesday. It was only a matter of time. Only son was very concerned. He brought me hot chocolate, a blanket and a film. Daughter two disappeared as soon as I said I felt sick. She lives in terror of the norovirus. Daughter three just enjoyed her pasta. I could see the cogs spinning in her head as she tried to think up her next autumnal project.