Izzy Bird, storms
Izzy Bird, labor

Izzy Bird, sourdough

After her time in the snow storm with Jim, Isabella returned to the cabin in Estes Park that she is sharing with two young men while she waits for the banks to honor her circular checks.

Her life right now is not glamourous.

“I cleaned the living room and the kitchen, swept a path through the rubbish in the passage room, washed up, made and baked a batch of rolls and four pounds of sweet biscuits, cleaned some tins and pans, washed some clothes, and gave things generally a ‘redding up.’* There is a little thick buttermilk, fully six weeks old, at the bottom of a churn, which I use for raising the rolls; but Mr Kavan, who makes ‘lovely’ bread, puts some flour and water to turn sour near the stove, and this succeeds admirably.”

Which just goes to show you that our recent turn to starting our own sourdough bread during the pandemic is nothing terribly new. When you are stuck, make sourdough.

Isabella is concerned about her clothing, however. She has been in Colorado for three months, during which the season has changed. She has only what she could carry in a small carpet-bag and after “legitimate wear, the depredations of calves, and the necessity of tearing some of them up for dish-clothes,” she is down to a single change of clothes. She needs new shoes but can’t buy any in Denver because of the money situation. She does have a formal black dress and coat, which she has taken to wearing during dinner so that she can spend the evening mending her daily outfit.

* This phrase should be familiar to all Pittsburghers everywhere.


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