Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Joy of Being Fed

I think that "thank you" is sometimes not strong enough to express the gratitude for a home cooked meal. I know that the term Soul Food has connotations of its own - a flavor, a culture, heck there's even a movie! - but when I have had the experience of a home cooked meal prepared for me I am hard pressed to find a better expression than "soul food" to encapsulate how it truly nourishes my being.

This is my phone life right now.
Yesterday I had a long and difficult day. I spent the entire day on the phone with various bureaucrats in my union, my human resources department, and bill collectors who have suddenly appeared with questions about my grandmother's essentially non-existent estate. This is exacerbated by the fact that the only phone that functions appropriately in my home is a land-line, corded phone. So I spent the day, like it was 1982 on a chair in the middle of my kitchen trapped until each called ended. It is actually kind of funny now that it is over.

I ate a hard boiled egg and a bowl of cereal all day, that was it. Ridiculous, I know, but true. There was time for little else, because when my husband got home, we had an appointment to go to. Another stress I was not looking forward to. Needless to say, with all of this, dinner was not something I had thought about. In the midst of our meeting, my husband had to excuse himself because his cell phone rang. I thought it was strange, but it must have been justified...

As we left (not sure if we were more or less relieved than when we entered) he explained that the call was from his mother and he got nervous because she called twice in a row. I understood, and then he said the magic words,

"She cooked for us."

It was as if the entire insanity of my day melted away. I was saved! Food was coming my way - good food was coming my way and for no other reason than she loves us and she has extra. Soul food.

We had pork chops, rice and beans and a salad. It might as well have been the food of the gods.

I say thank you a thousand times over, I was the dishes, I say thank you some more, but is the message received? Is the sentiment conveyed? How does one truly show one's appreciation for a meal?

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