We weren’t celebrating anything in particular, just Saturday night and Claire at the babysitter’s and my parents’ fortysomethingth wedding anniversary. I had the seared ahi tuna; he had the asparagus. I had duck confit a l’orange, which fell off the bone, with a deliciously earthy brown lentil cake. He had rack of lamb with potato gratin and ratatouille. We argued over who would get the orange creme brulee, and in the end we both had it, and we both won: it was perfect, shallow, buttery, silky and rich but not too sweet.

Jules charmed everyone with her astonished expression and perfect manners.

Oh, and last night Jeremy called and said “Go look out the window,” so Claire and I did, and there clinging to our sill was a light dusting of snow.

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