March 10, 2009

So much for posting every day this month.
I’m enjoying my second run through Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. Here’s one quote that I want to share:

…the religion of time-saving pushes me to zip through a meal or a chore, rushing everybody out the door to the next point on a schedule. All that hurry can blur the truth that life is a zero-sum equation. Every minute I save will get used on something else, possibly no more sublime than staring at the newel post trying to remember what I just ran upstairs for. On the other hand, attending to the task in front of me- even a quotidian chore- might make it into part of a good day, rather than just a rock in the road to someplace else.
~Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Vegetable, Miracle

She opens that chapter with a story about how once she was able to shave some time off her trip someplace, by going a different route. Her grandfather then chided her about how it took her fifteen minutes to gloat about the great feat, now what was she going to do with the rest of the time she saved? Later on in the passage she talks about how cooking, to her, is one of those “quotidian chore”s- an ordinary task that takes on meaning when one takes her time and approaches it in the right spirit.

When I’m in a blue mood I head for the kitchen. I turn the pages of my favorite cookbooks, summoning the prospective joyful noise of a shared meal. I stand over a bubbling soup, close my eyes, and inhale. From the ground up, everything about nourishment steadies my soul.