Saturday, January 13, 2007

Brown paper packages tied up with strings

Two books arrived on a crisp morning in a brown package. My New Year cum Birthday gift to myself. Utterly perfect.

In Feast, Nigella says this:
Feast is not just about the way we cook and eat at the great religious festivals or big-deal special occasions, but about how food is the vital way we celebrate anything that matters-a birthday, a job, an anniversary; it's how we mark the connections between us, how we celebrate life.

Nigel Slater makes food, the buying, cooking and eating a homage to earth and to life:
There is a single rose out in the garden, a faded bundle of cream and magenta petals struggling against grey boards. A handful of snowdrops peeps out from the ivy that has taken hold amongst the fruit trees. The raspberry canes are bare save the odd dried berry I have left for the birds, and the bean stems stand brown and dry around thier frames. A withered verbena's lemon-scented leaves stand crisp against a clear, grey sky. January 1st is the day I prune the tangle of dried sticks in the kitchen garden, chuck out everything over its sell by date from the cupboards, flick through seed catalogues and make lists of what I want to grow and eat in the year to come. I have always loved the first day of the year. A day ringing with promise.

I bought these two books to remind myself that in 2007, I want to celebrate life every day. So often, I am caught up with the whole grind of living and working that I end up forgetting to LIVE. Forget all this c'est la vie business. The journey, as they, say is the best part after all. That's kind of resolution cum birthday dictum for the year.

So, I turned 31 quietly. Feels awfully grown up. I made 31 wishes and sent them out to the universe. At the end of the day, life is about balance and I do think everything has a way of finding its own rhythm. So, there's also a sense of letting go because you always get what you deserve.

I think each of us have our own word for the principle behind this, whether we call it serendipity, karma, justice, kismet. Same thing to me.


Anonymous said...

your birthday had just passed?! why didn't you say so!!

HAPPY (belated) BIRTHDAY, Jane dear! I don't know if this is language-ly correct (don't understand a word of Italian), but VIVA LA VITA!!

~ hugs & kisses ~

Anonymous said...

I sent you an sms on THE day. Did you get it, coz I didn't get a response. :( If you didn't, let me wish you a Happy Birthday again!! Do the books also mean that Jane's going to add another feather to her cap, i.e. gastronomical extraordinaire?? :)


starlight said...

happy birthday!!!

and no more of this quiet business. next time let us celebrate with you, the same way we all celebrate the beauty of your writing. hope you had a great day and do share more nuggets of wisdom from lawson and slater.

am sending 31 hugs your way.

30in2005 said...

Aaaawwww. Happy birthday! I'm hoping some of the wanting to 'celebrate life each day' is blog-infectious.....

Hope you had a good one albeit quiet!

Mint Chutney said...

Happy Birthday my friend!!

Jane Sunshine said...

May: Thank you, thank you. 1 year younger!

Anon aka Blabs: Sorry babe I changed my number but didn't pass you new one so that will explain text. Thank you so much for the thoughts (I am terrible cause I think I forgot yours in Nov ....hruumphh). About trying the recipes-yes, that's the plan. Maybe I will blog about the gastronomical mayhem that is wont to happen.

Starlight: Okay, next year I will celebrate with a bang with you girls. Thank you for the hugs -needed them on a drab day like today.

30in2005: Yeah, we went for a nice dinner with a pianist crooning songs from the 80s so I enjoyed that. Sending some sunshine your way.

Mint: Babes, where are you??? Miss you loads. Thanks so much for the wishes. Update when you can, please.

Kak Teh said...

jane, you celebrated yr birthday in paris, right? we must do it again here..ewok and i will be waiting - just name the day.

Jane Sunshine said...

Kak Teh: Actually I was back in London. I am struggling under the weight of my case study chapter. And another report to write. What about meeting sometime next week to unwind? Will email you.

kikare said...

Hi Jane,

Came to your blog via littlemissmay and immediately found three common denominators - London, food and books.
Have you read Nigel Slater's Toast? Rememberance of his childhood/ growing up through food.