No a single trace of politics

Only flowers, kittens and borscht

The day of silence. That’s it, all is silent. No politics. No a single word about politics. It is forbidden about politics. It is allowed, for example, about puppies, kittens, flowers, borscht, about what doesn’t fit into the political paradigm. Yet there are people who genuinely say “I am beyond the politics”. And they lead the lives ‘beyond’ normally, and everything is fine with them, couldn’t I do the same? Huh?

So, about the flowers…

My grandma deadly loved pavonies for some reason. Actually, I know that the word is written like ‘peonies’ but my grandma always said ‘pavonies’ and it’s mouth-watering for me to say the word this way too. And she had the billow of those peonies. Other people didn’t have the pigweed in their yards for this volume as she had peonies. And they were blood-red and beet-red even black, snow-white and of the pink dawn color. They grew literally everywhere in the flowerbeds, in the garden, behind the house, next to the house, in the yard, on the corner, behind the barn, next to the cellar, under the potatoes, in strawberries, and even in the middle of the pumpkin planting she always had peonies.

Usually, local Romeos loved coming around into such blooming yards to bring a ragged bunch on the date and say: “Erm, well, you know, I brought this for you, oh… Here you are!”. The grandma knew this tradition of local Romeos in love so from time to time she arranged the ambushes in the garden. She sat on the chair with huge scissors and only the gates squeaked, the grandma said, “Son, come here, I’ll give you the scissors and show where it’s better to cut”. Sometimes these sons fled back, but most of them went on or later returned, and grandma, lightening with matches, helped to collect the best bouquet, asked about their Juliet, gave some kind of advice. And if there wasn’t grandma on that chair the boys knew that the scissors lied in the garden, on the table, under the pig iron.

Maybe that’s why while Romeos uprooted rosed in other gardens, my grandma’s garden bloomed, soared, smelled and there was no damage. The grandma always spared those peonies. The half of the village went with them to the Last bell holiday or to the prom and those ones who were getting married had their wedding ceremony all decorated in peonies. She didn’t sell a single flower. She said, “They didn’t grow from my blood, they grow from the soil”.

And only once she regretted the bouquets. There was one such Romeo who ran to her for flowers and carried them to one girl. The grandma didn’t like Romeo himself, but the girl was nice, both kind and beautiful. The grandma cut the flowers not for him but for her. So he married that girl. And then he moved to the city and got to polit… oops…

Or, for example, about dogs… and cats. Our family equally loved cats and dogs and they always appeared as if from nowhere, there were plenty of them. And, most importantly, they all were so versed. That one kicked the hens out of the garden, this watched the gates, that was on duty with turkeys. And the cats were always busy, the ones slept on the roof, the others waited for the mice from the field and some of them worked on the enhancing of human’s endorphins – they lied in the middle of the hall on the sunny spots, turning their puffy bellies upwards and begging for something tasty.

The names for dogs and cats in the village was another thing. Of course, there were many Knopkas, Zhulkas, Barsyks, Jacks, and Polkans (typical Ukrainian names for pets – ED). It happened that something terribly scary jumped out the gates and barked at you so you had to quickly count all these nicknames in a peaceful voice. It would respond to some of them. But over the time the fashion extended to the original nicknames. And if earlier it was about some Mariana or Leoncia, after a while the fashion for nicknames moved to another plane. And already several generations of the nastiest cats are called no other than Shufr… oops… again about politics.

Or about borscht. Borscht is a meal which at the same time both unite and drive in a culinary duel. Because they say – four housewives and eight borschts. And each has the tastiest, most correct, most accurate and the most secret one. Once, for the sake of the experiment, I stand next to the friend making the borscht. We cooked from the same products, in the same pots, dropped in the same way. And what? The borscht tasted absolutely differently. And importantly, both had the tastiest. To say the truth, I had a bit tastier than her tastiest one, how could it not?

I really saw a bloody fight in my life for borscht. We make borscht for funerals. And usually, a young woman with her bottomless bucket is invited for this occasion. And usually, in the village, there is one such a young woman who is invited everywhere either for a wedding or for the funeral. And somehow it happened so, an error of the universe, that one plot of our village consisted of two of such young women. And two with the buckets. And the two had the tastiest borscht. And they cast angry looks at each other but silently shared the areas of borscht influence. And once it happened – two neighboring yards and two had the funerals. And since the same people go to the funerals, the tables were established on the border, two cooks began to cook. The scandal started boiling in the borscht when the one cut potatoes in another way, and the other сut the beetroot in a non-Orthodox way. And the two of them boiled up, clashed, the sparks fell off the ladles. It was when they were finally driven away in different houses. And the people were eating those two different, but equally tasty borschts and thanked the cooks. And those two still don’t talk to each other, silently sharing the area of borscht influence.

And now I know, there is no other more passionate topic than borscht. So you write the recipe of your borscht, of course, the tastiest, the most correct, the best one. That’s it, the Facebook buzzes the whole week. People argue, curse, unfriend each other, promise to pull a pot on the head for this way of cutting the cabbage. And our people are rescued only by some accidental commentator which would come out and say something about borscht from Syzran. And that’s it… those who make borscht from fish, fraternize in a righteous battle with those who are very good at white borscht. The witnesses of borscht without beans support casualties in the previous fights of the convinced bean-lovers and all stand up in one front to bark unanimously: “What the hell do you know about borscht? In Syzran! Go and stir lapti in your shchi and never dare you, even in your mind, to articulate this sacred word – borscht!”

Oops… at least here, was it without politics?

Tatusya Bo

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