The Daily Bread

Going to a bakery after pulling a 20-hour work day in a long week of 10 to 15 hour work days is the best kind of mistake a person can make. As I walked home this morning from a client presentation with a heavy bag of goodies from Le Pain Quotidien I felt a great sense of satisfaction at the heavy load I carried.
Yes, I did get a little frenzied as I started pointing to things in the case, and the bread shelf. And, yes, I did have them slice a loaf. Yes, I enjoyed a cup of cooked sweet brown rice with soy milk, agave and fresh berries almost too slowly – my first meal of the day at 11:30 am after an all night marathon. I just sat on the ledge by the window and slouched as I slowly scooped little mounds of wholesomeness into my mouth with a biodegradable disposable spoon. Perfect.
I marveled at how light my cup of cappuccino felt, as if they prepared it knowing that I like my cappuccinos dry.
Yes, I even bought lunch there – for Angelica. A sandwich of grilled chicken curry with cranberry harissa chutney on five grain raisin bread. As I stood at the register pointing at things, I thought, “I could feed my whole family here! I should buy this and that for tonight and tomorrow and the next day”. I prevented myself from eyeing cookies and I had to fight my impulse to go and look at the fruit preserves, but I could not resist a rustic apricot and almond tart that caught my eye, a gorgeous thing.
I guess any other day, I might have feelings of guilt about spending almost fifty dollars in a bakery. Probably I would be giving myself a talk about how I “should” save money and “shouldn’t” buy a large apricot and almond tart that looks like it was baked by old hands by a lady in a small village in France. But today is a good day. My late night work session turned out to be an antidote to a sense of restraint that sometimes prevents me from truly enjoying simple things.

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