As Joe waited he glanced down the oak runway and silently counted the number of receptacles that cluttered the table. The contents of the red cast-iron saucepan were transferred to a similar vessel and then perched on ornamental metal trivets. In time, these spuds and sundry veg’ would find themselves on plates ready to eat.
Derek had been sitting up for Rachel for nearly thirty-five years, and Natasha, their youngest daughter, for over twenty. The Peterson family accepted having to sit up straight and, apart from slightly pronounced sternums, were (more or less) free of disability.
The wine hadn't yet made it to the table and was waiting by the fire. It was undoubtedly a good one, smooth, as wine buffs say - very smooth. Joe momentarily wondered whether it might be a fruity one, or perhaps possessed a hint of something or other, but he really hadn’t the nose for wine.Sat at the top of the table Derek broke the silence. 'Fifty pence a bottle in France.' He then hoisted the bottle to eye level and pointedly examined the label. Then, in a soft Anglo-French accent, proceeded to announce the grapes origin and hinted about the quality. 'Produce of St. Emilion 1982,' adding with the softest of sniffs, ‘You can't beat a good Bordeaux can you Rachel?' Lowering the bottle to within an inch of his not inconsiderable nostrils, the connoisseur produced a bolder sniff, and, after a short pause, concluded - 'superb'...
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