Saturday, November 13, 2010

And now...?

(Well, I'd need a good whisk, a pepper grinder, and a pair of tongs, too, but you get the idea....)

I've been having a lot of Bridget Jones moments lately. Not in the drinking a bottle of wine and singing sad songs at the top of my lungs and smoking a pack of cigarettes in my pajamas (or, alas, making out with the smolderingly handsome Colin Firth) kind of way, but more in the reflecting on where is my life going kind of way. I have to admit, I'm having a hard time settling into normal -- or if not normal, at least more sedentary and gainfully employed -- life.

I mean, what does one do after more than a year on the road, with its constant biking and exploring and learning and writing and farming and cooking and problem solving and meeting a ridiculous number of amazing, inspiring people -- in short, immersing oneself completely in the things that one loves most? It's a tough act to follow.

In the four months since my return, I've continued volunteering with community garden and sustainable food groups, writing, talking with people, and getting the lay of the land. Just last Wednesday I volunteered at an after school cooking class at a nearby elementary school (and am looking forward to my next three shifts with the group of hilarious, even-more-hyper-than-me kiddos). I've started doing a little paid editing work, which is nice in that it helps pay for some of the things I can't barter for (you know, like rent and school loans and health insurance). I think I'm pretty decent at it, but it's not what I want to do for a career. Plus, it's hard for me to sit still for days at a time in front of a computer. I make up all kinds of errands to run around town so that Ollie and I get at least a handful of miles in each day. Like yesterday -- so gorgeous and sunny and in the upper 60s -- after some morning editing work we rode an easy 8 miles out to Pentagon City to peruse the cooking and travel sections at Borders for a couple of hours before making it over to my cousin Sonia's place for a multi-hour cooking extravaganza.

As I look around and contemplate what it is that I want to do next, how I can help make the world a better place, I find myself drawn back to the kitchen again and again, both literally and figuratively. All I want is a job in food -- cooking, writing, celebrating, teaching -- is that so difficult? We'll see.

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