One of the things I love about my friends is that I regularly hear about some amazing meal they've eaten recently. "You'll never believe the sheer amount of truffles that were coating that tagliatelle," they'll sigh with delight. Or, "I've eaten my weight in fresh ahi tuna and fear I may have mercury poisoning," (I'm looking at you, Meredith). It's honestly one of the highlights of my day, to get a play-by-play of a resplendent meal enjoyed.
My response, though, is always the same. After the requisite shared exuberance passes, I always ask if there's photographic evidence. I want to see what glorious damage you've done to your otherwise healthy eating habits and ability to restrain yourself. Inevitably, the answer is always the same: "Um, noo...I was too excited to eat to take photos."
I have to say that part of me, while I completely understand that otherwise rational people (like myself) may black out when approaching a really great meal, part of me is always a little incredulous that I'm hearing gastronomic music to my ears with no sound. How could you forget to take at least one photo of your most memorable, blissful meal of recent memory? How is that even possible?
I didn't fully have an appreciation of how much your excitement can forsake all else until we were at our friends Joe and Lisa's house in Washington, DC last month. Joe is, quite frankly, slightly insane about food. I say this in the highest, most complimentary way possible, but I honestly think Joe might be slightly permanently cross-eyed from the sheer amount of food research he did on our trip to Vietnam two years ago. Anyway, Joe backs up his culinary obsessiveness with a killer ability in the kitchen, and one night he promised us a good home-cooked meal when we were still living out of suitcases.
I worked myself into a frothy lather, thinking about and anticipating what that meal might entail. After three weeks of suitcases and a whole lot of boiled pasta, I might've been slightly ravenous. And oh, was that dinner Joe made ever delicious. Stuffed courgette. Homemade hummus. Delicious chorizo. I ate and ate and ate, and when I came up for air, I was still eating.
It wasn't until all the plates -- and my head -- were cleared that I'd realized I hadn't taken a photo. Not a one. I was gutted that I'd forgotten to document Joe's amazing meal, and so the next morning I snapped a photo of this beautiful cappuccino he made me. The swirls of foamy milk, the chocolate-y espresso from Peregrine -- truly, this is the stuff that makes waking up in the morning exciting. I dreamed about that cappuccino for days afterwards.
So, Joe, I'm sorry. The next time we do a family cooking day, you do all the heavy stirring. I'll be standing behind my tripod, snapping away.