Saturday, 16 May 2009

All good stories must draw to a conclusion...

Departure Day.... Sentimentality...
Monday was upon us far too soon.  From the moment everyone rose and met over breakfast, the air remained thick with a sense of departure and regret that the three days passed with the speed of a rocket. Perishable ingredients were used up, the full fat milk went unused, it had been set aside for the custard we had intended making to accompany the rhubarb still growing in the garden; how lucky the rhubarb was to have escaped a death grasp by a gaggle of cooks too full to be able to squeeze even another bean in let alone another course. Like the last day of boarding school the beds had been stripped back, bags had been packed, left over provisions and booze were either reunited with their rightful owners or reassigned to new ones.

Susan's bus was due to leave Bromyard back to Worcester train station to pick up the homeward train; I drove her to Bromyard and waited in the drizzly rain, I listened with continued amusement to yet more escapades of a Food Technologist.  Trust me dear readers the next time you pick up your luxury dessert from any of the well known specialist High Street purveyors of fine food, or watch the television advert boasting seductively about the ingredients contained within, trust me a lot of mishaps have been ironed out before they find their way to the shelves, so pay your £6.99 without conscience, that they ever arrive on the shelves at all seems a miracle to me.

I meandered back in the beast towards the house, which held all the early promise of a Hippy commune and reminded me of the rather unsanitary one a group of friends set up in Surrey in the late 60's; the only difference being that ours was much cleaner and contained all the comforts of modernity. On arrival I was greeted by an anxious Adam who came rushing out to meet me, concerned over the length of time I had taken to deliver my charge to her destination, endearing qualities in a true friend; to be rich in the knowledge that someone is rooting for you is a very comforting thought indeed.

No one wanted to leave. It was as if holding onto each other a little longer would prolong the dream - keep it alive, continue to fill the inevitable empty spaces that would inhabit our lives on final departure.  We had all revelled in the sheer joy of a shared passion, which some people might find hard to understand and which I have never before encountered.  These feelings do not replace the importance of family and loved ones, they enhance them, they add another dimension to who we are, they layer and spread the colour and the music born from within.

We hugged and vowed a reunion only once a year would not be enough, despite the use of email or telephone, so after promising to feed the dream we all went our separate ways and I was more than pleased to have Kristen and Sam with me, at least as far as Bath.  

Since last October when we all met on the Arvon course, the whole experience has proved to be an Epiphany; I feel I have found my tribe; been anchored by a commonality; writers and cooks are givers, they exude a generous spirit, they are creative, hold strong a sense of drama, nurture a grass roots sense of improvisation, they share and want to share, they enjoy the very best nature and her earth have to offer, invariably they are organic, they don't like too much interference of alchemy in their food... yes... I am blessed, I have found my tribe.  

'It is not the blood that ties, but the sifting of ashes that fuses kith with kin' (Screenplay by Rosie Jones 'The Sifting of Ashes', 2008)

1 comment:

Kristen In London said...

how beautiful, Rosie... how completely you capture the sense we had of something gained, something then to let go of. Happily, we know it is all there for the gathering another day/month/year. It's true, as George Bernard Shaw said, "There is no truer love than a shared love of food." Bless you for capturing this.