Monday, March 01, 2010
THE SIXTIES ON MY MIND! WHAT A DAY FOR A DAYDREAM
To me there has always been something incredibly seductive about restaurant kitchens. I fell under their spell many years ago. Seduced by the unique aroma of cold rooms and glistening stainless steel bench tops; the heat emanating from sturdy ranges, simmering hot pots filled with mysterious ingredients and slippery oil-splattered floors, I knew I had to be part of that weird, wonderful world. I was alive! Like Niagara Falls, my adrenalin copiously flowed! I was charmed, intrigued and captivated! I’m sure many would question my sanity, but don’t worry, I’ve been insane for years so save your time!
After a few years of dangerous manoeuvering one adopts a unique kitchen gait, one that’s even more contagious than the Hokey-Pokey! Without it, danger lurks in every step and corner!
Akin to curtains rising upon a stage show, the doors of the restaurant open, and the show begins! Eager diners stream in, and their orders take over the kitchen, staring at you from spikes above the ranges…the spell is broken in a blink! It’s all systems go! If you don’t have all the preparation done, the restaurant may as well remain closed. All hell will break loose otherwise! You’ll be so behind the eight-ball, you’ll never catch up. Disaster lies in ambush! One’s focus must remain unbroken until the last meal is served. It’s a very stressful, but rewarding job - one not for the faint-hearted.
These days I prefer a leisurely lunch spent with a good friend like the one I had over the weekend here at my personal dining table, or the one I shared at same friend’s home a couple of weeks ago. Both were lots of fun, just kicking back over a wine or two, simple, but excellent food, while being entertained by music from the Sixties, causing much reflection on the days of our youth – a time of mental growth; a time of taking both tentative and brash steps towards discovering our respective place in life. The Sixties were a magical mystery tour!
I’m glad I was part of it all – and can remember that I was!
To quote Bob Dylan: “People today are still living off the table scraps of the Sixties. They are still being passed around -- the music and the ideas.”