soaking in it

Next Tuesday, at some point during a six-hour time frame, a new stove will be deposited at my house, my old one taken away to be recycled, and the cat will hide at the sound of strangers and for at least an hour after they go. (Scaredy.) The coming stove is one that ticks all the right boxes by being reasonably priced, all-electric (no gas line in my kitchen! Bah! Evil builder), steam-cleaning and self-cleaning, oven elements hidden, glass top, true convection, warming drawer, free delivery, and—surely music to the ears of anyone in Canada—free of tax. The delivery and tax savings, and choosing white instead of stainless, means that we saved hundreds of dollars over what we intended to spend. That’s a huge relief when you make that kind of purchase. 

And then we traipsed. We were going to poke our noses in at Chapters, but we chose to eat quickly and get out of the shopping center so that my husband could make it to a town meeting about expansion in our neck of the town. We had amazing and affordable shawarma plates with really good hummus—more tahini than I put in mine, but still balanced. The toum was so thick and buttery that I was sure there was dairy in it somewhere. When I make it, it’s thin enough for drizzling, and honestly, I just made a huge jar of it the other day and it’s already gone. But now I’m tempted to try it with one of the recipes I found online that use egg white, because I’d plunk a twenty on the chance that it makes the stiff, creamy difference.

It’s a good thing that there’s no such problem as too much garlic in this house. My favorite store gets beautiful purple-papered heads of garlic all year long, and it never lasts long. I remember once going to the (awful) supermarket in town where one of the sourpuss cashiers snarked my dozen heads of garlic. What if I really did have to deal with vampires at home, and it was a sensitive issue for me? Sheesh. 

Back at home, listening to the soccer coaches shouting and the parents cheering in the parklet behind our house, I watched the sun set and felt a little relief that things were smooth here in my little house. We got news that a (good, non-price-gouging, walking distance) supermarket that’s been mired in paperwork hell for years is going to break ground next week. And I tell you, I cannot wait. I haven’t used my car for groceries in almost a year. What comes home is brought there on a city bus using my own back and shoulders, and I’m more picky because of it. Occasionally my husband will bring home a bag full himself, on his own shoulders. Always especially nice because he’ll bring home the heaviest things—his milk, a bag full of Granny Smith apples, that glass jar of cranberry juice. My bus riding looks ridiculous to this suburb full of two-SUV families, and seems a small volley against the barrelfuls of things wrong with the oil industry, but it’s what I’ve got. I feel good about it.

And today, a slow cooker full of white beans is doing its thing. They’ll be done in time for dinner, crushed a little bit with olive oil, garlic, smoked salt, and rosemary on the most amazing bread, a little appetizer that doesn’t go at all with the bok choy stir fry entree. Oh well. It is sunny and hot and dry-ish and this is what I wait all winter for, to live like this. And here comes the weekend, with so many options in front of us that I can’t even predict what we’ll be doing tomorrow. 

And if anyone ever thought I wasn’t grateful for how lucky I am, they’d be wrong. 

Listening to: Anchorage, “Sun”  …this girl is gifted.