November 2, 2011

Yesterday

Got up at six. Had tea and toast. At the soup kitchen, we swept the outside seating area by 7. By 7:20, I was eating a pancake the cook whipped up for the early morning help. I made salad dressing for 1,200 people. I forgot to mix four garlic heads into half the batch, but it all worked out because the cook needed to get the pasta going quick and when he found out what I had left in the blender he was thrilled. While we served food, I tossed tomatoes in the salad and buttered bagels and opened donated bags of pasta, the sample size. 

Got home at 1:15 p.m. The week’s community meeting began at 2. It was noted that an unusually large amount of food was served for the first day of the month, which is when people who live on checks usually receive their checks. They don’t visit soup kitchens until their money runs out later in the month.

I made dinner. It consisted largely of leftovers from an acclaimed Monday meal. I’m lucky that way. On my very first “house day” in 2006 a friend of the community’s dropped off an entire rib dinner for forty. There were twenty in the house at the time, but we put it all away. I accepted credit for the rib dinner as I did the leftover buffet, though little was forthcoming. After dinner, five people performed a Gregorian chant after the cat was removed from the room. The cat knocked over a photo of Cesar Chavez on the top-most tier of the Day of the Dead altar in order to sleep. Luckily, there are many pictures of Cesar in the house. Also lucky that someone snapped a photo before Star was evicted. 

Before I locked up the house at 10 p.m., I forgot to fetch the 10-gallon pots from the garage and fill them with water on the stove so the early risers could fire up the burners for whichever anarchist or hippie happened to be making coffee and oatmeal in the morning. I fell asleep in the closet to thoughts of sugar plums and having the entire afternoon free today to write in my blog.



36 comments:

Brian Miller said...

do you have one red fingernail?

nice cool snapshot of the day...the soup kitchen is a familiar place for me...our cook is a mean snake if you get on his bad side...haha...

funny note on the cat....ribs sound nice though...lots of nice textures here to the daily living...

i think the increase in early month served is telling of our times....

Elisabeth Hirsch said...

Coffee and a free afternoon. That sounds like so much fun. I hope you're having a wonderful day.

Betsy said...

You just need a photo college to go with this! ha.

Jill said...

Sounds like a full, productive day with some relaxing moments. I love those kind of days.

Pat Hatt said...

Wow don't you wish sometimes you could just be that cat and lay around with your arms dropped over a wall...haha...oh and those red finger nails, you may have to rethink them..haha

Geraldine said...

The need isn't going down, is it? I've helped out at soup kitchens, food banks...for many years. It's nice to read that you help this way too. I've always been grateful that I could help. It puts things into perspective for me, in my own life. There but....

Thanks for sharing a view of one day in the life of Ed.

Leontien said...

My Gosh Ed.... your a busy guy.... hehe

I just was a bit thrown of by the soup kitchen thing. I'm am not sure what a soup kitchen is....

OH and i LOVED your tree above your (somebodies) bed....

Big kisses and so glad to be back here with you
Leontien

LOLA said...

Did you have your nails done because you came out of the closet?

Love,
Lola

Kathy G said...

That's a VERY relaxed looking cat!

oceangirl said...

There is romance in your day. I know it is hard work to get up early in the morning and prepare food and I appreciate the efforts that the community is doing on behalf of mankind. But there is romance, and there is nostalgia and to top it all up, there is the cat, and the going back to the most beautiful window in the world to tell your story.

EcoGrrl said...

ahh, all the reasons i love living in my home - unless i'm with a partner, i don't like others in my home. even renting to a tenant in the basement, who is barely around, is hard for me. i love my solitude. maybe it's from being a social butterfly during the day, so this is one of those readings that makes me grateful, feeds my curiosity on how the social folk live :)

Stephanie D said...

Sounds like a fantastic day and very productive!

She Writes said...

A community life, huh? I am very private and yet I blog. Perhaps community is a good thing :).

Claudia said...

ah great to get a glimpse inside community life...salad dressing for 1200 people...wow..love the pic with the cat...she looks so relaxed..smiles

Kelley said...

What a day! I can't get my mind off all of that dressing and food and water and... That is really awesome that you do that for them!

Little Ms. Fun said...

You are definately dedicated to your cause. It's refreshing to read of someone giving back. Love this! Oh, and what a cute kitty :)

Slamdunk said...

I am with LMF--kudos to you for your volunteerism. Inspiring.

That gentleman's lady said...

Gotta love passing it forward. You meet the most interesting people that way. Some of those encounters are seared into my spirit.

Joshua said...

I suppose I shouldn't complain about my busy days when all I do is sit at a computer for 9 hours and then go home.

ayala said...

Ed, I love your day.... I feel it though your words.. How wonderful to walk with gratitude in your heart.

Jannie Funster said...

Dearest Ed of the Sugarplum closet.

You cracked. Me. Up. over the cat and Cesar Chavez.

Salad dressing for 1200!!!!!!!!! Holy cow!!! And awesome how the garlic thing worked out. Love life bits like that!!

What a fun post.

And you are an amazing person. I've never worked in a soup kitchen. Or been in one.

xo

Sheri said...

A look inside some of your day left me exhausted and a little in awe.

Phoenix said...

Awesome. I love hearing about your life at the community and this is the first I've read about your cooking adventures (or the cat.) Every post is a clearer glimpse into all that you do for others.

LOLA said...

Ed, Jannie Funster obviously has a crush on you. Better tell her now.

Love,
Lola

Mary said...

I really enjoyed the glimpse into your life!

Amish Stories said...

Ed I'm extremely disappointed in you, you were only able to make salad dressing for 1,200 people. Well I'm kidding and i think giving back to those who have less(food) than some of us do is a wonderful thing. Now try and get some rest you got me tired just reading this post. Richard from Amish Stories

The Purple said...

what beautiful way to spend your day.

best.

ladyfi said...

You're doing good work!

The Empress said...

Everyone has 24 hrs in a day, the same amount: for everyone in the world.

BUT the hours filled in service to others, seem to be measured differently somehow.

The clock doesn't tick in the same way.

I liked this, Ed.

hedgewitch said...

Hilarious pic of the cat.

You're doing a good thing, Ed. You'll learn more about what's important in one month there than ten years in an office. It's a pleasure and privilege to read your adventures.

Being Pramoda... said...

Seems a nice day u had, by the way, good pic.. may i ask, whose hands? :)

Birdie said...

dressing for 1.200 people? i can hardly imagine how to prepare that... i had to giggle at the cat... i wonder what was the cat thinking :-) happy days ahead!

My Inner Chick said...

--a free day to write. how sweet.

did the fairies inspire you, ed? x

Movies on my Mind said...

Man, there you go living the dream again ;-)

Susie Clevenger said...

Sounds so terribly hectic and so wonderfully grand...what is life if we don't help others and have the blessings of friends? Loved getting a glimpse of your life.

Yvonne Osborne said...

You make me want to work in a soup kitchen. I want to work someplace where there's a photo of Cesar Chavez on the wall.