"All for me, none for you!" One chubby hummer has laid claim to one of the feeders, driving away all intruders. He would like to extend his territory to the other bottles, but can't leave his throne for fear of invasion. It might be understandable if he were actually slurping juice and hungry. He just sits on one of the "flowers," head turning this way and that, clicking a warning and then flying at the enemy, swordlike beak at the ready. Until this pint-sized despot turned up, this has been an unusually agreeable group of hummingbirds this year, sometimes sharing the same flower two at a time. (Don't ask. I don't know how they do that without tangling tongues.) I'm watching to see if there will be a palace coup.
Menu: German-style pizza with the thinnest crust, creme fraiche, bacon, onions, and mozzarella. Chicken cordon bleu (stuffed with ham and cheese) with savory wine sauce. Mixed vegetables with herb butter. Spaetzle (tiny dumplings). Apple tart and dark chocolate cake with apples, both served with fresh whipped cream.
At twenty-two, Jule is an accomplished chef. The ambitious meal was cooked to perfection and her timing (one of the hardest things in cooking) was spot on. I was a very full and grateful guest. On her travels again today, I wish her safe journey.