I was 12 ½ years old when I read Louis Sachar’s novel, Holes. The last couple chapters I read out loud to my little brother, Taylor, as we sat on our porch in one of those round bamboo chairs that hold you like a bowl of soup. It was the second time I read the book and I loved connecting more loose ends that I had missed previously. But one scene in particular always grabbed my attention- when Stanley Yelnats IV, famished and dehydrated after escaping Camp Green Lake, finds God’s Thumb and the abundance of sweet, crunchy, juicy Onions.
Now, I ate-and still eat-nearly everything. But my brother disliked-and still dislikes-numerous things, especially, Onions. But after we finished that book, for an hour or so something magical happened. We went into the kitchen, sliced up a sweet yellow Onion, and ate it raw. Tay and I both agreed it was delicious.
About an hour later he was picking out the microscopic bits of onion in my mom’s meatloaf.
For a small moment in time, tastes were altered only by words on paper.
I believe that our food experiences are just as fluid as the events that surround and inspire us. A music album, a book, or even people watching can inspire flavors that interpret and paint a scene.
I must add that I am fortunate enough to live where food is so readily available that I can consider it an art form and not just a means of survival. Then again, what can be more beautiful than a bowl of rice, if you are hungry or a glass of clean water when you are thirsty?
There is beauty in the complex and beauty in the simple. I’ll paint you some of my favorites.