My apologies to KC and the Sunshine Band, but this is what continues to roll around in my head as I contemplate the deli department. I am fascinated by the idea that there may be a connection between my 1975 disco dazed platform shoe wearing self and my latest persona of Deli woman, even though I have no idea what it may be.
It seems fairly obvious that thinking about safe food handling, store protocols, and the infinite nuances of Boar’s Head product varieties leaves little room for either grief or disco. Perhaps this is a good thing on both counts.
I look in the mirror these days and barely recognize the woman I see. I am not talking about the process of aging, although it does seem to have accelerated this past year. I am speaking of the ongoing and continuing process of transformation that plays out on my face as I explore living for the first time in well over 20 years in an environment without a single live being, human or four-legged breathing along with me.
Do I bear a striking or even faded resemblance to the woman in all the mirrors that have come before? Who was the caregiver, Pilates devotee, rower, co-worker, mom, photographing, beading, adventurous, beach combing, disco mamma passionate Beth? Where do these parts of me now reside? Is it possible to repurpose the qualities that contributed to each of those roles? Is there a way to coax at least some of them back; nuanced now with added depth of textures and flavors that the recent years have brought?
There are times when the silence of my home is peaceful and welcoming. It is luxurious to get up in the middle of a sleepless night to bake, knit, do laundry, or listen to music without having to consider waking anyone. There is joy in coming home tired from work and eating a handful of pretzels on the couch instead of cooking dinner. And yet…
I am finding my way, even through the crying that accompanies, stacking the last cord of wood, hearing the heartbeat of the drum during the Micmac Honor Song at church, Molly’s collar falling out of the closet as I reach for my hat, or coming home from work in so much pain that I can not move.
I begin to contemplate the honor in food preparation and service from a new angle. I look forward to a day, when there may be another place mat or place mats joining mine on the kitchen table as I create an elaborately luxurious meal to share.
After all, “That’s the Way… Uh Huh Uh Huh, … I slice it.”