Gaby Book 15 ~ Friends ~ Chapter *8* Full Diary

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*Chapter 8 *

Full Diary

“So we going to the market on Saturday?” Steff asked as we settled into our usual lunch seats.
“Sounds good,” Pia stated, “which one?”
“I vote Bonn.” Nena stated.
“What about you, Gab?” Steff asked.
“Don’t see why not, Mand’s never been, she’ll want to come.”
“I might have to meet you there,” Con told us, “I have to work the morning.”
“Mand will have training in the morning too, we can come with you.”
Bridget arrived after a pit stop, “Bonn Saturday Bridg,” Pia advised.
“We should ask Anna,” I suggested.
“I’ll ring her later,” Steff agreed.
“You decided on the cakes yet?” Brid asked, “Not Pflaumkuchen I hope.”
“No,” I defended, “I thought we told you.”
“We did,” Con agreed, “Stollen, Nürnberger, Schwarzwald and some English thing, what was it, Gab?”
“Mince pies.”
“What are they?” Nena asked.
“It’s like currants and stuff in a pie or we could do it as tarts, maybe with sugar glaze.”
“That sounds more interesting than pies,” Con mentioned.
“We could have both?” I proposed.
“So where does this ‘mince’ stuff come from?” Pia queried.
Where indeed, at home, no this is home, back in Angleterre you just go to Sainsbury’s and get a jar, everyone has a jar in the cupboard. Which is just as well, I only suggested doing the MP’s after I found two catering size jars in our larder – they must’ve come when we moved here. It’s a good job the stuff keeps for like, ever!

“We have some at home,” I allowed.

Mand was less enthusiastic about going to Bonn Weihnachtsmarkt than I was, when I told her of the plan as we made dinner.
“It’ll be fun,” I suggested.
“Some of the girls have been, it’s all beer and candles.”
“Hardly, oh go on, Mand, show you my skating skills?”
“You aren’t supposed to do strenuous stuff,” she pointed out.
“Bumbling around a tiny rink is hardly strenuous. Please?”
“Geez, alright I’ll go but it better be fun,” she cautioned struggling to keep a straight face.
“So how’s the decorating going?” I enquired; you’ll remember she’s on the work team for decorating our cabin in Ahrweiler.
“Okay I guess, the lads should have all the panels finished tomorrow I think. I’ve been washing the chairs and tables that Pia’s dad donated, they were disgusting, must’ve been in those cellars for donkey’s.”
“Or longer, I hope the coffee maker and stuff is better.”
“Yeah,” Mand agreed.

“Dottie’s put the first two dresses together,” Steff announced as we waited for the laggards in Thesing’s Thursday morning.
“That was quick,” Con suggested.
“Together I said, not finished,” she pointed out. “Anyway, can you and Gab come this afternoon for a fitting?”
“Guess so, Gab?”
“After my extra class I suppose.”
“So we’ll have couture costumes,” Con chuckled.
“Not exactly, we just need to get the lengths right, shortie here would need twenty centimetre heels to not trip over the hem.”
“Yeah, she’d never balance on twenty,” Con snorted.
“Why you!” I mentioned before chasing her around the table.
“Girls!” Therese admonished.
“Sorry, Mrs T,” I offered.
“You needing the kitchen later?”
Bum, we are supposed to be cooking biscuits this afternoon.
“We have a dress fitting first mama so we’ll be late.”
“I’ll tell your father to leave the oven then.”
“Thanks,” I told Con’s mum.

The others arrived together; there was an accident just outside Rech, which meant they’d had to go the long way round. We were a bit tight time wise so we set straight off for the Express, Con electing to walk with me rather than ride with the others.
“So when can you ride again?” Con asked as the Zug joggled along to Ahrweiler.
“Hopefully next week, I have to go to the Klinik again Friday afternoon to be poked about, you know, down there.”
Look, I might have all the equipment but it doesn’t mean I’m comfortable talking about this stuff. Real girls, well obviously I am one; but girls who haven’t spent fifteen years being a boy, well they’re less inhibited. I never wanted to have an ‘innie’, I liked having an outtie even if it wasn’t a real one, it was so much less, I dunno, messy.
“I hate the stirrups,” Con mused.
“Yeah, tell me about it,” I agreed.
We sat in mutual silence the rest of the journey, each contemplating having our bits poked by doctors.

“I told Manda we’d do the skating rink Saturday,” I told the assembled flock of Angels at lunch.
“At the market?” Brid queried.
“Yeah, there’s always one in the Friedensplatz,” I stated.
“I’m not taking skates,” Nena mentioned.
“We hire them there, dumbo,” Pia pointed out.
“Was just saying,” Nena replied.
“Not been skating for an age,” Steff opined.
“We went in the holidays,” Con put in.
Guess I missed that, being in foreign parts all summer.
“I forgot about that,” Steff noted.
“Well I’m in,” Pia confirmed.
“You reckon we can get some glühwein?” Nena proposed.
“Not if we go looking like school kids,” Pia mentioned.
“Best not look like school kids then,” I allowed.
“We know you can pass, Gabs, despite your size,” Nena stated.
“We all can, lay off the makeup a bit, wear some frumpy long skirt and flats – oh and don’t talk about school.”
“We should do it,” Con grinned.
Now we’re talking!

“You are wearing flats at the market?” Dot queried.
“That was the plan,” I confirmed.
“I think maybe a five centimetre heel would be better, the dress will hang better.”
“She’s right,” Pia observed as they both looked me over.
I looked in the mirror; maybe I do look a bit, erm, squat. I lifted my heels to simulate the proposed increase in height, it was better, when I pushed up to my toes it was spot on.
“That’s it, Pia pin it there,” Dottie instructed her apprentice.
“I’m on my toes,” I pointed out.
“Platforms,” Pia suggested.
“Whatever,” looks like I’ve been stuffed again.
The dress was something like the pattern Eva had bought, like but not the same, Dottie had added a twist or two. Instead of a zip the back laced up and whilst we wouldn’t be corseted she’d somehow added some boning into the dress itself giving it more shape than the pattern suggested. She’d also replaced the plain wide sleeves with a slashed mutton design that would be more practical for the catering but also complimented the lad’s costumes.
It hadn’t really been discussed but I was quite pleased with the light blue of my costume, the slashes filled by a dark yellow shiny material. Con’s garment was a light green with darker green in fills, it worked on her but it wouldn’t’ve on me.

“Not sure how warm those dresses’ll be,” Con stated as we walked back up the town towards the rail line.
“Have to dig out the thermals.”
“I wonder if anyone’s got a heater we can borrow?”
“Dad’s got one of those mobile radiator things in the workshop, I can ask if we could use that.”
“Might be a good idea.”

We had a lot of biscuits to make but at least they are quite easy to do, Herr Thesing has the moulds and cutters of course so it’s mostly about making the batter. Con has more experience with the bakeries machinery so I landed the job of getting everything into the ovens and of course out again without burning anything, me included. We soon had a production line going, once Con had the batters ready she moved to removing biscuits from moulds ready for me to refill.
We ran out of materials about six thirty, by seven we were clearing up as the last batches cooled.
“You staying to eat?” Therese asked.
“What’re we eating?”
“I’ll take that as a yes, Kalbleber with pommes?”
“Oh yeah!”
“Clean up properly, food on the table in thirty minutes.”
“Yes, mama,” Con agreed.

It felt a little impolite leaving for home just a few minutes after being fed but one lucky girl has homework to do tonight. The liver was beautiful, just caramelised, the onion slightly browned but still soft, we might’ve had gravy at home but it would’ve swamped the flavour.
“Someone looks happy,” Jules observed when I poked my head into the lounge.
“You eaten, kiddo?” Dad enquired.
“Heya, kalbleber,” I advised.
“It’s allowed then,” Jules admitted.
“Did you get your baking done?” Mum asked from the comfort of Dad’s lap.
“The biscuits, we’ll do the cake next week. The dresses look cool.”
“Never thought I’d hear her say that,” my sister mentioned.
“Well they are, where’s Mand?”
“Getting paint out of her hair I think,” Mum supplied.
“Sounds like fun, I’ve got homework to do.” I stated.
“Don’t stay up too late,” Mum instructed.
“I won’t, nite!”

Maddy Bell 05.02.16

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