When I need a day that is nourishing and that makes me feel like I have everything in the world that I need, I want to reach back into the dark corners of my mind and pull out a snapshot of today. From the moment I woke up, I felt content and blessed to have this cute little home near the lake with a refrigerator full of healthy food and happy little critters to share it with.
I’ve been craving Gallo Pinto, a yummy dish of rice and beans I ate every morning in Costa Rica. The craving was particularly bad last weekend and I started googling the recipe and how to find the yummy Lizano Salsa that is a key ingredient. Yesterday I made sure I got all of the ingredients and promised myself I’d make some this morning. As I was boiling the chilis and chopping the vegetables, I realized that it was this time nine years ago when I was in Costa Rica learning to surf among other things. How much of my craving was yearning for that lovely spot and how much was for the food?
At the same time I was craving the Gallo Pinto, a longing bubbled up for my Christmas tree. It’s still fall here, but I want it to be winter. I want the early darkness of those short days with the warmth of holiday lights and the scent of sweet candles. After last year, I have decided to reach for things when I want them rather than put them off because of inane expectations. Life is short.
Yesterday I prepared for my day of fulfilling longings by making up the Lizano Salsa, cooking the rice and beans and buying myself a holiday treat (at the urging of my friend Michael). I went to bed looking forward to a relaxing day at home and all of the comforts that go along with it. I fixed my favorite decaf coffee this morning and drank it while I was sautéing my wonderful Costa Rican feast. I played some holiday tunes and lit my favorite candles while I hauled my tree down stairs.
I took Ashok out for a walk and when I came back my house smelled wonderful from all the cooking. I was really glad I had to make the Lizano Salsa because those chili peppers brought an unexpected warmth to my kitchen. All afternoon I relaxed in its wake and the glow of my tree. Outside, the yellow and orange leaves fell on a 60-degree November day. It was hardly winter, and it definitely wasn’t Costa Rica, but it was a lovely day nonetheless.