Sunday, January 17, 2016

Home, home on the prairie ... or the bluff

Although we live in Madison, we are on the northeast side of the city and adjacent to the town of Sun Prairie. Our apartment is in that blue section in the upper right-hand section of the map, above the intersection of Interstate 90/94 and Highway 151. The white part above the blue is Sun Prairie.

For reasons known to the Weather Channel and the location app, my tablet is convinced that I am either in Sun Prairie -- I will give it that -- or Maple Bluff. Maple Bluff is a few miles away and is where the governor's mansion is located. On the map, it is the narrow reddish purple bit alongside Lake Mendota. We are definitely not in Maple Bluff. 

The app keeps switching my location. I can be sitting in the living room checking the weather, and one minute the tablet is in Sun Prairie and the next it is in Maple Bluff. Disconcerting in a way. I imagine the Weather Channel has reporting stations/sites in each of those places and some slight variation in solar interference or fluctuating magnetic fields or perhaps the traffic patterns over the airport moves me from one side of the boundary to the other. It doesn't matter much, as far as I can tell.

Today was as bitterly cold as forecast and we opted to stay inside all day. It was very sunny. We both felt like a field trip but neither of us felt like braving the wind and cold. Tomorrow will likely bring more of the same. At least I got some work done on Wings.

I made the Zuppa Salsiccia for dinner. As suggested on the recipe site, I made it at midday and am letting the flavors mingle until dinnertime. It smelled delicious while cooking, and I look forward to trying it out. I bought a baguette to accompany it and have Parmesan, Romano and Asiago cheese on hand.


anne marie in philly said...

that bitter cold is headed for my location for the next 2 days. my lungs are dying just thinking about it.

Michael Dodd said...

Anne Marie,
Sundance wanted to go out on the balcony because it was so sunny outside. When I opened the door to show her what it was like, not only did she cringe but my own lungs almost closed up on me. Lay in a supply of goodies and stay inside.

Mitchell is Moving said...

Sorry you have to experience that bitter cold. I still get a chill when I think about last winter in New York. I wish I had had some Zuppa Salsiccia.

Michael Dodd said...

The soup was good. Because when cooking and eating, I try to make healthier choices -- not always healthy choices, I confess, but healthier -- I made it with sweet Italian turkey sausage. It was tasty, but I suspect if you decide to use regular sausage, it will be even better. And next time I will use less spinach. I like spinach -- see above remark about healthy choices -- but it was too much of a visual presence. Instead of putting so much in the soup, I will use fresh spinach in the salad.
Mangia, mangia!

Anonymous said...

Glad you liked the soup. I have used fresh baby spinach and it somehow
is less of a visual presence than the frozen kind. Also, the half sweet, half hot
poultry sausage is a nice combo. I never made it with "real" sausage.

Here's another "healthyish" choice. A little more labor, but few ingredients:

As a side: brown a little olive oil with garlic, soften some halved grape tomatoes
and wilt down a bag of baby spinach. A few pignoli nuts can't hurt if you have them.

For the Dijon chicken, I prefer the grainy dijon mustard ( I like Trader Joe's brand. By the way, TJ's is another grocery store you might want to
check out in Madison. ( in the daytime; not on a weekend ( the young folk love this store so after work and Sunday afternoons it can be over run with earphone wearing bearded wonders and/or yoga pant wearing women discussing their soul cycle classes. Both groups can be attractive and annoying at the same time. And when you have time, because like Aldi, it too is private label and takes longer to figure out items at first. Lots on offer here. Explore and experiment on your own. My staple picks that I don't see elsewhere: Naan bread, well-priced olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, fire-roasted salsa, a little box of concentrated chicken broth packets perfect when you just need a cup for a recipe, and their orange bag of frozen polenta and spinach.Made as is or diluted with fresh or frozen spinach for a quick, easy side.


PS Looks like there is an ALDI grocery store ( Refer back to earlier rave) in Sun Prairie, so when the siege of Stalingrad ends you won't have to far to travel.

Dominic said...

Greetings Michael. This is my first response to your blog, which I enjoy very much. Regarding the unreliable location in your weather app; you might try the "Weather Bug" which allows you to specify the exact location of the weather sensors from which you want readings. You can download the free app at

Sorry, I don't know how to include the URL as a link.

Michael Dodd said...

Thanks for your support and for the suggestion, Dominic. I had the Weather Bug on an earlier device but was warned that it was sometimes a gateway for viruses and such. Perhaps that bug has been removed? (Bad pun intentional.)