My apartment looks like a troop of unruly nine year old boy scouts were left to their own impish, gleefully mischievous devices when grocery shopping. An absolutely embarrassing number of sugary American confections in telling, obnoxiously loud neon boxes are spilling out of cabinets that are much to small to contain the armies of teddy graham bears and peppermint kisses doing their utmost to hide within.
God bless them-every one.
As I sit here munching on a hoho and reading “Cooking with Paula Deen” [hohos make me feel close to Paula], I’d like to clarify something: I promise, I really am a food snob. [If it helps, I’m eating this hoho off a plate with a fork!] I can’t tell you the last time I put a hoho [or it’s equivalent] into my mouth before this one. I’m absolutely mad about cooking and quite frankly, I’m rather good at it. I love what imagination can do to a little bit of flour and a whole lot of decadent chocolate and creamy butter. And despite what that implies, a hobby of mine in the US is coming up with divine dinners that will make you forget your middle name, but are astonishingly healthy for you.
Well, here in Africa [where government recommendations on the proportions of fruits and vegetables that are advisable in your diet are viewed less as helpful, and more as imperialist propaganda], things are a bit different. Thanks to my rice-loving African counterparts, I’m currently in the process of ensuring that there will indeed be no carb left behind when I hop on a Raleigh-bound plane in seven months.
Something about life in Senegal can take a food snob and leave her unwaveringly convinced that she can’t possibly go
another day without a ding dong. And so when sweet friends ask what I’m dying for in care packages, I’ve been known to request foods that several months ago wouldn’t have gotten a second glance from me, and now occupy the better part of my daydreams.
Hohos, teddy grahams, candy canes, French vanilla coffee, wheat thins, and chocolate chips [oh. my.] were premier on wish-lists that I sent back across the ocean several weeks ago. Yesterday morning at about five thirty AM, Ben and I ran [okay, on one cup of coffee the best I could do at that hour was amble confusedly] to the airport to pick up Jason and Courtney-two coaches of ours from the US that are here for a couple of days to observe what we’re doing, offer feedback, and ensure that we’re not contemplating throwing ourselves into oncoming traffic in an effort to get home for Christmas. They both packed duffels full of presents from our families, friends, and some Bible studies that have “adopted” us back home! I wish you could have seen that group of twenty somethings bursting out in peals of irrepressible, elated laughter as we unpacked Funyuns, Jiffy peanut butter [not, mind you, intended to be eaten together], and enough zebra cakes and Christmas candy to keep us sugared up until 2011. The caption to that picture in my head is “nine year olds gone wild”-and was. it. ever. hysterical. I had a laughter induced headache at the end!
I’m not kidding. I took two advil.
Vraiment merci to everyone that had a hand in the madness that ensued in the kitchen last night. You made a STINT team feel overwhelmingly loved and cared for. And in no particular order, on my part…
Thank you Talley and everyone else from the SP for all of the teddy grahms, coffee and magazines! You guys are so sweet-we’re rationing everything you sent for team movie nights from here until Christmas. :)
Thank you Mary and the EKU Bstud for the magazines, hohos, chocolate chips, coffee and the lemon heads for my “lemon days”. :) [Wildly creative, and SO thoughtful.] I wish you could have seen my face when I found a “Vogue” in that stack of magazines! You’re not, unfortunately, endearing yourselves to the men on my team given that I made Ben promise to read to me tonight…;)
KStew, thanks for the Christmas music, candles, magazines and stuff to remind me that I’m a girl. You get me, and I miss you. :)
Our early Christmas was serendipitously timed in the midst of a rough week-God knows what He’s doing, I think. And the weary world rejoices.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to run. Dayton has goaded me into trying my very first Funyun.