Hello and welcome to our magazine!
The advantage of an online magazine is, I don’t have to rely on printers to finish it on time, it doesn’t have huge costs to produce it, and it doesn’t end up in the recycle bin at the end of the month. It’s ongoing and growing all the time, and our Readers dive in & read older articles all the time.
Why is it called B-C-ing-U?
- A) Every brilliant name that I thought of was already taken – in every shape and variation!
- B) I’m a great fan of the Patrick McGoohan cult series, The Prisoner, which was filmed in Port Merion. Everyone walked around saying ‘Be seeing you.’
It’s about life, leisure, pleasure, hobbies, meeting friends and going out and about, eg. Be seeing you at the restaurant on Friday before the gig starts, Be seeing you after I get back from my wonderful holiday that I read about in B-C-ing-U, or Be seeing you tomorrow, but I’m busy right now, curled up on the sofa with a great meal that I read about in B-C-ing-U, and I’m reading B-C-ing-U!
I already travel a lot, and I’m very interested in crafts in different countries, as well as food, history, culture, etc of course, both here and abroad.
Although I love making things and dabbling in crafts, for a lot of people in the world, if they don’t work they don’t eat. It’s amazing what ideas they come up with. For instance, in Cuba they turn empty drinks cans into toy cameras, cars, planes, etc, apart from patching up their old American cars with them. And craft markets are being opened in different towns as well as in hotel gardens.
The Norwegians are renovating old farm houses and opening them as B&Bs and craft centres. I also saw a lot of craft shops, selling a huge variety of hand-made goods.
And here in the UK, upcycling is the trend. Recycling is when you find an old table, sand and polish it, and use it as a table. Upcycling is when you saw the legs off, paint it, add stencils, and hang it on the wall as a shelf.
When money gets tight, imaginations get going!
Like a lot of people nowadays, I have terrible food intolerances. My doctor insists it’s not allergies. What makes me angry is, I only have these intolerances in this country. I can go literally anywhere else in the world and happily eat anything, even if it’s from dirty roadside stalls.
We have a huge number of shops and supermarkets, open seven days a week until late in the evening. So why oh why do we need food additives in everything?
When we returned from living in Spain for several years, it was blatantly obvious that crime and diet go hand in hand. The local youngsters who ate takeaways and convenience food all the time were the ones who threw the empty packets on the ground, smashed windows or behaved badly. It’s well-known that some additives make them hyper.
It seems that the sexes have different intolerances. Females have yeast problems, and the males react to fizzy drinks, and coloured sweets.
Then there’s the many hours/days/weeks lost annually because people are ill through something they’ve eaten.
I’m noticing a huge increase of awareness of the problem. Supermarkets now stock specialist foods, eg glutein-free products.
What makes it harder for me to control is, not all additives are listed.
I saw a box full of apples, all laid neatly in their polystyrene cradles, with a pink circle on one side, which had obviously been sprayed on. But it said nothing about it on the box.
Some kippers are artificially coloured, although it says they’ve been smoked.
Bananas often arrive here green and are then gassed.
Since about 1953, loaves of bread only have to rise once, due to the addition of something called S23. Unfortunately, the yeast is still working after we’ve eaten the bread, which is why so many of us are yeast intolerant – in this country. I can happily eat properly-made bread.
The saddest one is the packets of salad leaves. The poor immigrants in Spain don’t even have homes, let alone washing facilities. When we get a sunny spell, they get work, picking the leaves in horrendously hot greenhouses, with chemical-loaded water raining down all the time. It’s so strong that the soil has to be scooped up and changed regularly.
Their hands often have e-coli and other bacteria on them. It’s not their fault, poor things. And they’re even sending money home to their families to keep them alive!
When the leaves reach the UK they’re washed, often in chlorine.
And I was wondering why I was ill after eating lettuce leaves!
Every time something upsets me and I find out why, I write and complain. And the supermarkets are listening and taking notice of what they’re told.
Gradually more and more of them are producing ranges without additives, so there is a light at the end of the tunnel. And hopefully days lost through sickness, and our crime rate, will drop.
‘Proper’ food is much tastier than packets of rubbish, and it’s easy to rustle up a simple meal.
We have an allotment so I often have to invent a dish to use a glut of beans, for instance.
I collect foreign foodie ideas. I’m good at persuading people to part with their secret family recipes, and I’ll be sharing them with you, dear Readers. But you mustn’t give them to anyone else! And do join me in campaigning for Real Food.