I love Saturday mornings, especially here in the Frobbit House! I never know what the world has to offer when I open the shutters and look out the window. Either I begin the day enveloped in cotton clouds, or dramatic sunrise. Or rain. Well, as I awoke this morning, I told myself that regardless of the weather outside, it was going to be the best day ever, because I had family arriving from distant shores! The excitement of having family with me a thrill that cannot be limited by words. It just is.
So as Cherry and I stumbled into the kitchen for my cappuccino and some morning jazz, I opened the windows and decided that I was going to grab the camera and have my coffee on the rooftop because the view that awaited me was poignant and poetic. Did I care that my hair looked as if I had stuck a wet finger in the electric socket or that I was in a house gown? Nope. All that mattered were the 4Cs – camera, clouds, coffee, and cat.
The baker was a bit late in honking his horn this morning, because he got stuck with another customer down the road. But he is always worth the wait, especially this morning when I wanted to showcase the local bread. Much to his surprise and delight, I cleaned out his remaining croissant stack, and added some multigrain baguettes and a few of the traditional bread rolls. He grinned happily when I had visitors arriving from another country. This man is the epitome of customer service. He makes mental notes of details that never fail to surprise and amuse me. He asked me the other day whether my daughter was still in town or was travelling again, which is interesting because he never actually met Maike while she was here. He knows something is up when I buy more than the usual croissant and bread roll, and today I hit the jackpot when he had just enough pasteis left for me.
Even Cherry sensed that something was up. She supervised the cleaning and sat politely at the gate while I brought the bread. When I got ready, she groomed herself too and sat and looked at me as if asking So now that we are all pretty, what now? How do you explain family to a cat who never experienced it?
My love language is food. So when I cook for someone, it is because I care deeply for them, and put heart and soul into it. Today was all about expressing love for my family through food. This is a rare and precious occasion that we share, not having seen each other in years. Oh I have missed the laughter at the table, recounting tales of our youth, and catching up with the here and now. Having good friends to talk to and share your life with is one thing, but being able to turn to family to share your past, present and future with, in addition to joys and sorrows, trials and tribulations, and be part of an unfathomable love and support is something that will always overflow out of any neat and limited box.
We’ve all aged, and if I have to toot the family horn, I would say quite gracefully. My cousins are few and precious, scattered all over the globe, and we share memories of our parents, as well as something I like to call family culture. You’ve heard all about corporate culture, but family culture is a unique mix of tradition, heritage, values, quirks, and even common traits. My cousin MC and I are empowered women in our own right and fields, but we share the same family culture of being so tone deaf that we can make it rain wherever we are if we sing! Both of us are utterly useless with maps, and don’t mind getting lost at all. We can talk ourselves out of trouble, value travel over parties, and have similar bucket lists!
I’ve been missing my mom very much lately, so to have my cousins here is just what the doctor ordered, especially with Mommy’s death anniversary just around the corner. It was such a joy to share the Frobbit House and take them around the shire, so I am looking forward to showing them around Lisbon next week!