For now. We are in full-on frantic mode here, packing and planning for the other half of our lives in warmer latitudes. No more eggs in the Redcoates fridge, thus no more cornbread. We’re using up and making do with ingredients that can be stirred and stewed into quick meals with little labor. It’s entirely possible for quick, nourishing, homemade meals to taste good. Yesterday: red posole with garlic, shallots, roasted New Mexican green chile (pulled from the freezer) and ground elk. Tossed everything into the crockpot and let it simmer all day. Topped with scallions, lime, cilantro, grated white cheddar and creme fraiche (key). Served with toasted tortillas. Tonight: simple polenta with diced canned tomatoes, green bell pepper, mushrooms. And quick carrot soup, based on this recipe, with a bit of ginger and chile. It worked. Everything did. Right now, we’re just ticking off items on a mile-long list of to-dos, and eating ranks up there with changing the car insurance and shutting off the water.
I’m looking forward to a nap. I’m looking forward to noodle soup and curry in a nighttime heat that makes me sweat. And to tell you the truth, I can’t wait for one of those day-long Lao bus rides because—when the driver is reliable and the road reasonable—it means hours to think and read. I never, ever get bored on long bus rides—scared, yes, perhaps. And thankful for a proper bathroom when the bus stops (never take an overnight bus from Siliguri to Kolkata!). But never bored. I welcome the time to reflect on life, to write in my journal, to sink into another world of a tasty novel. I never seem to have the wherewithal to sit still unless forced into a cramped bus seat with a grilled chicken on a stick shoved into my hands.
Many travels ahead; meals, too. Here’s to a promising new year for all!