Monday, September 21, 2009

An introduction

An old joke that I used to use to describe myself: "I spend time knitting scarves I never finish, writing short stories I'll never publish, and looking through cookbooks, but always ordering a pizza, instead."

Well, I've given up knitting*, but I've graduated to cooking – and cooking a lot. Sometimes I cook strictly following recipes from cookbooks, and sometimes I cook new recipes simply inspired by the instructions. Sometimes I cook with inspiration and skill, using ideas and techniques (seemingly) all my own, and the end product is a beautiful representation of all the excitement and energy put into it – and sometimes, after all of that, we still need to order a pizza. But that's okay. I love learning, and I love pizza.

About four months ago, my boyfriend and I moved from Washington, DC to Buenos Aires, Argentina. Back in the States, I had a good job in a great restaurant. I was a server, which meant I was around delicious food all the time, but never involved in the making of it. It also meant that, as I worked most nights early into the morning, I rarely had the opportunity, or energy, to cook as I'd like at home. Quitting my job and moving to another country has afforded me the time and space to cook to my heart's content. It's been incredibly special, and absolutely necessary.

The next step, then, is to chronicle the cooking – mainly, I admit, to practice the writing. I have been, I suppose, like many others: with a skill and love for the written language, equaled only by the strong and ugly forces of arrogance and laziness. It’s only after receiving a few rejection letters for the few short stories recently sent out that I realize that I really, really need to practice writing. It’s not so much enforcing a chore so much as establishing a routine, a sunny structure to my already sunny days. And what better way to begin than amidst the smell of pumpkin bread baking in the oven?**

Not only am I learning just how to do what I love, but what it is I love to do the most. Most nights, Bennett (the boyfriend mentioned in the previously previous paragraph, and alluded to in the paragraph before that) and I will make dinner, have a digestif, and settle down to watch a movie we'd rented earlier, passing a plate of fruit back and forth between the two of us. It's a sweet life, and I'd like to share it.


**More on that doughy treat later.

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