Thursday, May 22, 2008

Ciabatta R us, maybe

Monday 19th May 2008
It was a bit of a mad rush this morning, Ian had to get into work early to see in a couple of early deliveries and make a Quiche before 9am. Needless to say it all went horribly wrong, 2 deliveries didn’t turn up and each time he started work on making the Quiche somebody would interrupt him.
We had an appointment booked at a Church School for 9am, which is why it was such a mad panic this morning. Carolyn did her usual thing before dropping the kids of at school and meeting Ian at the Café just before 9am, she must have had a cushy morning and the kids had obviously behaved because she didn’t even notice that Ian had a large Oil stain right in the centre of his shirt pocket, an accident from when he was filling the fryers, that made it look like he was lactating. Ian manages to drop something on his shirt every time we are going to a meeting, but normally we are leaving from home so he can change at the last minute, you would have thought that someone as thorough as Carolyn would have brought a spare shirt along for the ride just in case the absolute certainty did happen. Alas, when Ian asked if she had brought a spare shirt with her, she looked at him like he was an alien. She’s starting to get lax; we are obviously going to have to apply a bit more pressure to take her out of her comfort zone. (It’s a good job she doesn’t read this)
We had our meeting with the Principal, a very nice chap who told us that it normally takes, and he normally allows an hour for these visits, an hour and a half later we were leaving his office. The school is very Christian in its views and to emphasise this, they only employ practicing Christians who actively participate in their Church, this includes Cleaners and Ground Staff as well as teachers and the moral and behaviour standards are very high. It is a lovely school with a lot going on that our three would love to get their hands on, and it is quite small which is what they are used to.
The days start with a prayer, and everything that is said and done throughout the course of the day is expected to be Positive and Pro-active, there is a policy of inclusion which should anybody feel that they are being excluded is enforced by staff. It works like this, should a child want to join in a game with other children, it is against school rules for the other children to refuse to let them join in. This works in two ways apparently, it encourages children to approach other groups of children without fear of being rebuffed and in turn reduces the risk of bullying, which generally starts with children being excluded by other children and then moves on from there.
Over here it is called a Private School and fees do have to be paid, but the Principal was quick to point out that Jesus probably wouldn’t be very happy with them if they charged a fortune and only accepted the children that they felt would do best, so they fees are kept quite low and probably don’t come to any more than we were paying for extra bits and pieces at school back in the UK. Unfortunately they only have room for two of the three kids at the moment, so that could be awkward, although the middle one could possibly do a trial period in the year above to see if she could cope but it would be a gamble.
We are going to look at another Anglican School on Thursday.

When we got back to the Café, it had been busy surprise, surprise, it was exactly the same whenever we left the Pub for Couple of hours (for those who don’t know, we used to run a pub in the UK), it is almost like the world doesn’t want to come in while you are there, as usual the staff had coped admirably without us.
Michelle, one of the staff, made some Scones today, unfortunately she put them on the wrong shelf in the oven, at the wrong temperature for just a little bit too long. They feel a bit hard but don’t look too bad so when we run out first thing tomorrow, we will give them a go.
Ian finally got his 4 Litre mean machine today and it looks and drives great, the rep brought it round to the Café for us which was nice of him. Ian let Carolyn drive it round to the Car Park, purely to park it you understand; now she can’t say she has never driven it.
It was a busy day in the Café, we are trying new things all the time which seem to be going down quite well. The latest is Ciabatta with healthy’ish fillings, it didn’t go quite as planned if we are being truthful, the Baker didn’t know what a Ciabatta was although he did have a recipe for it, today was the Bakers day off so his understudy had to bake them (the understudy didn’t know what one was either, but he did have access to the Bakers recipe). The upshot was that we got something which from the outside looked like a Ciabatta but once opened, looked like any other loaf of bread, not the light airy bread that we were after.
When the owner of the bakery found out that they had been trying to make Ciabatta for us, he made a point of coming over and having a look at the finished product, when he saw it he laughed his socks off. Obviously he could see straight away where they had gone wrong and told us that as a rule, he wouldn’t even attempt them because it is such a sticky dough and it is too time consuming but he would let them experiment for us to see what they could come up with. After speaking to him we came to the conclusion that a Panini might be a better proposition and he brought a couple of sample over, when we pointed out that they didn’t actually look like Paninis he said that other top restaurants in the area were using them as Paninis so why shouldn’t we. Let’s see what tomorrow brings.
Mad rush time after school, Kristian goes to Cubs and Marisa goes to Guides, so it is all systems go from the time they come out of school to make sure that they have their evening meal before getting into their uniform and making sure that they have everything they need for tonight’s meeting. Carolyn organises that bit and because she is under pressure, she doesn’t miss a thing, like I said earlier she just needs a bit more pressure to keep her on the ball.

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