Tuesday 18 January 2022

Milk & Honey

Each morning is made fresh, clean and beautiful with a new coating of snow. It is a subtle softening of the edges of the world, without guile or intent. That gentle accumulation of delicate white crystals on every leaf and frond, branch and stone, machine, mansion or tumble down shed, that blankets them and makes them all equal within its tender embrace. It reminds me that beauty is the natural state of the world, of nature, of this universe in which we are privileged to live and breath and sense the infinite wonder of being.  

I open the shutters in the predawn glow, then light the wood stove to warm our home. Grinding coffee and setting it to brew on the stove, I give a call out to those who need to leave the dreaming world and get off to school or work. Back in the kitchen I start to prepare Obento and breakfast, and the family start to emerge one by one and begin their own preparations for the day ahead. I break an egg into a bowl, add a hundred milliliters of milk, two spoons of sugar and a dash of vanilla, then whisk it with a fork till it is nice and smooth. Into this I soak two slices of bread, drizzle a little olive oil into a frypan on the stove, and lay the bread gently in the pan to sizzle. As the fragrance of coffee, vanilla and toasting bread fill the room I lay out plates and cutlery on the kitchen table. Each slice of french toast is flipped once so that each side is the golden brown of fox fur, and when they are done I place them on the black surface of the plate, dust them with cinnamon and top them with a spoonful of homemade yoghurt. After trickling lines of honey backwards and forwards across the yoghurt I drag the tip of a knife through the lines to feather the pattern. I pour the coffee, and breakfast is served! 

The modern world, human society, can be a complex and difficult place. I don’t think that it needs to be, it’s just that we tend to outsmart ourselves, mistaking luxury and extravagance for happiness, and forget to care and be kind sometimes…so I strive for a simple life, rich in all the unassuming beauty that nature provides, and hope that my work is an expression of that. And every day is a chance to start afresh. 

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