I am 100% in the Dessert Every Day camp. You know, have a perfectly ripe piece of fruit, a scoop of ice cream, or yogurt with honey – something to give you a sweet ending to your day.
A favorite dessert in our home is chocolate – dark most of the time, sometimes with nuts or dried fruit in it, sometimes mint flecked or sea salted – we like it all. Mr. F and I always look forward to relaxing together on the couch, having a little nibble of chocolate and talking about our days.
Thanksgiving is about a week away and I have been hit with a bad case of the half-way-across-the-world-for-the-holidays blues. They don’t have Thanksgiving in Oz, but if they did it wouldn’t be the same – like Christmas. I still can’t wrap my head around a Christmas day BBQ and a swim in the pool after exchanging gifts. But I digress, this was supposed to be about chocolate.
Yes, chocolate is my celebration. A celebration of a day done, time with my favorite guy and appreciation of something indulgent.
After dinner with friends last night, I was still feeling a little down. As is ritual, I had a piece of plain dark chocolate while we settled in to watch a little TV – but there was nothing. No small moment of bliss – in fact, barely any flavor (I was perhaps a little verklempt at this point, and thus possessed a blocked nasal passage, preventing taste) – I even had an extra piece or two, just to make sure – but nada. No chocolate pleasure.
This isn’t a lecture on emotional eating, but I just thought I would share because this instance made me consider my connection to this particular food and it forced me to take a closer look at what I was feeling. It turns out that I can’t enjoy my happy food when I’m feeling bummed out – and that’s ok.
Yeah I miss my best girlfriends an insane amount, and I miss wearing sweaters and scarves, and I miss walking around the East Village and buying my favorite coffee and Mexican food and a good margarita on the rocks with EXTRA salt, and I want to eat a big pile of Gammy’s mashed potatoes next week, damnit! And chocolate can’t change that.
(Disclaimer: Extremely cheesy conclusion to follow. Even cheesier than the preceding sentiments.)
So what can help? Skype, the beach, a few hugs, and getting back in the kitchen. And I am lucky enough to have access to all of those things.
To round out our happy ending to this story, I have just sent out an invite to some new friends for a relaxed Bondi Thanksgiving at our place. This way I’ll get some much needed kitchen therapy and a few tastes of home.
In the end, chocolate may be the catalyst for making my holiday season brighter. My love of enjoying chocolate is a great incentive to pull myself out of this homesick slump and embrace where I am now – with new traditions, new friends and new family.