Saturday, October 31, 2009

Good News: I don't feel the need to document the state of my gastric health right now. Like hives and eye-twitches and phantom spasms, stress is usually the culprit behind most mild health anomalies, and once it is managed or simply addressed, the symptoms usually dissipate. For me. I am fortunate in this.

I am fortunate in many other ways, among them for having a little Sunni in my life. Sunni, of course, is the CEO of Dogpatch, the canine day camp my dear boy Victor attends weekly. That she not only offers an affordable loving dog-day care service, that it is out among acres of farm and woodland in Clackamas Oregon, that she has swimming pools in the summer and bonfires in the winter, that she genuinely cares for every dog as if it were her own child (because the majority of her clients do treat their dogs as their kin), are reasons enough to be grateful to her for life. But when, at the end of a particularly frustrating day at work when it feels like your job description is to disappoint people, and Sunni hands you a grocery bag containing 3 pounds of freshly picked chanterelle mushrooms, you feel like you are one of life's lucky people. And appreciating luck wherever you can find it may just be the key to happiness.

I took my stash home and didn't even need to think about what I was going to do with the first pound of mushrooms. Right now I have a border at my house, a nice young man assisting my friend Kelly Reichardt with the script supervising and now post-production of her most recent film. I imagine that Gordon thinks I'm mildly cool, for an older person, and also a little crazy, which is fine. Hopefully, someone coming home and announcing that they are going to cook dinner, and proceeding to make fettucini from scratch is the kind of crazy person Gordon can tolerate for the next 2 months. In a surprisingly short amount of time, we were eating a very 1980's meal of homemade pasta with chanterelles cooked with ample amounts of butter and garlic, enriched with creme fraiche, and finished with fresh parsley and reggiano. Again, Sunni made life extraordinary. How on earth do I thank a woman who can't accept gifts of fat and sugar because of her husband's heart condition? Perhaps by paying it forward, I will continue to feed the karmic cycle.

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