Just spent three days in Glendale, just outside of Phoenix, with friends Tony and Madonna. Our connection goes to my first book, LIVING WELL WITH DEPRESSION AND BIPOLAR DISORDER, which came out in 2006. Tony came across it in 2007.
Three years later, I began a blog, Knowledge is Necessity. Tony became a regular reader and frequent commenter. Later, we had a couple of occasions to meet up, together with his wife Madonna. We instantly hit it off.
In 2012, I let go of my blog. Life also got in the way. But my recent travails have created new opportunities, including the chance to reconnect. Here we are – top picture – having just completed the ritual of signing my travel didgeridoo and posing for a selfie.
Here I am, down below, savoring homemade bacon.
The bacon became inspiration for some of my own home cooking. I stuck a little bit the leftover slab in my cassoulet. Cassoulet is a traditional French peasant bean and meat dish. Just about any combo of beans and meat and fowl works. As a final touch, you heat it in the oven (breadcrumbs optional) to get a crunchy crust.
Cooking kills a variety of birds with one stone. First, your use of real ingredients means you’re not loading up on junk.
Second, you have the subjective feeling of your food tasting better. Instant gratification creates fleeting pleasure only. Working at something results in the joy of accomplishment, which lingers for a long time.
Third, prepping and cooking food is an excellent stress-buster. When you have a sharp knife going within millimeters of your fingers, you’re not thinking of your crap from the day. Moreover, you get into a healthy meditative flow.
Finally, the sociability aspect. There are few joys in life that compare to sharing food with good friends. This is what communion is all about.
After my heart surgery and recovery, for various reasons I had no opportunity to cook for others.
Last night, I had an experience to savor.
Back on the road …