Connecting online, the velocity of the earth spinning blows my hair backwards. We are careening through space and history: blood-curdling screams, shouts of joy, a baby’s first giggle, lovers kissing, hot fudge dribbles, camel bells jingle, and radio static muffles the news. How can I rest? As the world groans and heaves with sorrow, as the excitement of hope ignites nations recreating themselves, as a new generation finds its voice, will I be one of those who will cross over the hilltop to the promised land or will my bones settle to dust in the wilderness? Is this choice mine to make?
Waking up after a short night’s rest, I wasn’t thinking about any of this; my brain felt fuzzy from lack of sleep. Two words came to me: “cloying” and “drizzled.” The sheets turned back revealed a pillow beckoning my return to sweet slumber. So, after my morning duties tending family, disrupting chaos by running “sweep” through the house collecting detritus, plates and cutlery to wash, re-stacking books and junk mail, dislodging dirty clothes from dark corners, launching the wash and the dishwasher, feeding the birds, taking out the recycles, feeding and outing the dogs, I had a choice: return to my cloying bed, my unwashed eyes yet yearning to slumber, or challenge myself to stay awake for another day of activity sleep-deprived. Passing by the bedroom door, I felt like Dorothy at the edge of the soporific poppy field on her way to Oz. Knowing her story, I resisted entering and thought about “drizzled.”
Over food, “drizzled” invites a voluptuous feeling of abandonment, acquiescing to the sumptuous delight of a titillated palate tingling with delightful sensations. To combat “cloying” I needed something “drizzled.” Not being much of a cook, and even less of one at dawn, I could only think of my best friend in Manhattan, JB, a gourmet cook, and how she would have found something worth drizzling. And there it was, sitting on my kitchen counter, a gift from her: fresh Greek honey from thyme blossoms.
Upon returning from Kefalonia, JB had mailed me a package containing farm-gathered honey from Sami and luxurious bergamot tea from her stopover in Paris. Bergamot, it turns out, grows along the Ionian coast of Italy, so the tea sweetened with honey produces a full-blown, Mediterranean balloon of seacoast sunshine ricocheting in space, stopping time, and leaving a cool, azure mint aftertaste you can feel hours later if you draw in your breath. Add to the experience, toasted baguette with sweet butter drizzled with honey et voilà, the cure for a thick-headed, hazy morn. Maybe I have tasted the promised land after all. May we ever renew each day with the good and sweet blessings of hope.
A taste of the promised land.