I light a candle and play soft mood music as I prepare cornmeal waffles from scratch. With a wire whisk, I blend the eggs and buttermilk in my favorite bowl. I add the dry ingredients–cornmeal, flour and baking powder–to this mixture. I stir in melted butter. I’ve done this for countless years. When I am present with this alchemical process, I am truly in my life. My presence is one of the ingredients. It is a ceremony.
Preparing an occasional gourmet meal, making a fancy dessert or mixing up a batch of waffles are some of the ways that I stay grounded. As a writer, it is easy to float away into a world of the mind, ethereal imagination and fluid wordy inspiration. However, hands-on, food preparation is of proportionate value to me. Isn’t it a balancing act at times?
I love good films about humans and food. Babette’s Feast, Chocolat, Mostly Martha, The Big Night, Julie and Julia, Eat Drink Man Woman, Chef, even Ratatouille! Only a few of the many wonderful films with this theme.
I am curious as to why I find these films so uplifting, satisfying and inspiring. Possibly because they elevate something that I have valued throughout my life. They take food preparation to a sensual and even “glamourous” height. Food that is so basic to our survival also provides endless enjoyment. To participate in the alchemical process of the creation of a meal and then to share the outcome with others is sublime.
For your journal, what is something (other than writing) which you enjoy that takes you out of your head and into the moment and/or process? Do you tend to this daily?