Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Cold Beef, Spiced with Carrots en Gelee

It's been a long famine in Proust with dinner party after dinner party and no mention of food. Then Swann didn't get invited to dinner anymore, and there was really a dearth of food.

Finally, in Within a Budding Grove (Madame Swann at Home), the narrator's family is entertaining M. de Norpois and Francois has made a fantastic meal.
"The cold beef, spieced with carrots, made its appearance, couched by the Michelangelo of our kitchen upon enormous crystals of jelly, like transparent blocks of quartz."

How's that for an image? Later comes a pineapple and truffle salad which doesn't sound too appetizing to me. Did something get lost in translation? M. de Norpois did not appear to be enthusiastic either.

Later, the narrator ate lobster Americaine and chocolate cake at the Swann's table.

Interesting that Odette (the other one) used numerous English words and phrases. Christmas, not Noel, and any number of expressions. Must have been the big fad then. Something I missed on the first readings.

The social climbing and gossip begin to grate on one, at least on this one. Such snobbery. No one is blameless.



No comments: