Stews and Buds.
Every day I colour in a page and in the process learn how the brain works. The most surprising thing I've learnt so far is that along the neurons there are bud-like things called 'dendritic spines' and these buds are 'plastic' in that they can grow, change shape and size and probably (one thing I like about this science is there is so much that is not known for certain) disappear altogether. The spines allow communication between neurons and so this is the way we make connections and think.
The slightly dismal thing is that there seems to have been an unexpected frost in some parts of my brain and all these little spines (which once supported spines of their own) seem to have turned black and have dropped off through disuse. For instance Hodmandod Major asked me a very basic chemical question on the phone the other night and for a few minutes I couldn't remember the answer. Considering it was the sort of thing I used to know very well indeed it is a bit worrying...but then there are things I know now that I didn't used to know at all: how to make Jamie Oliver's Shin Stew, for instance. Which, now I think about it could well be of more use to me at the moment, all things considered.