I was thinking of my ex all day. My Volodya, who is now someone else's Volodya, and I, his Adster, loyal now to an Irishman. Instead of greeting the day with brown bread, Kerrygold, and Barry's tea, I thought of you, and played with beets. Had I not worried for my lad's reaction, I'd have toasted to you with a proper Vodka shot. Instead I saluted you, Volodya, and your mother's perfect Borscht, as I scrubbed, trimmed, sliced, pickled, canned, and simmered a batch of beautiful beets from the Motherland. My Motherland that is, aka the garden that overfloweth with beets at my mother's house. Apparently it only takes a pile of cow shit. In contrast, my fancy schmancy Chioggia beets hit the ground stalled and after spending 4 months in the ground as of last week, I relented and pulled the 1 inch in diameter sore losers from the ground. Denise's beets, however, were beauts. And she did nothing. NOTHING. In fact, she spent the last month cruising around the San Juans, island hopping, partying at my house, and working on her tan. Meanwhile, those luscious beets came forth and multiplied. Hallelujah for that. Perhaps the next time she sails through I'll reward her accidental green thumb with a jar of the Rosemary Pickled Beets that left my little claws stained pink as Borscht. Or perhaps I should barter for some Gojo.