March 1, 2014
When hurricane Andrew hit south Florida, it wiped the landscape clean of all trees, bushes, street signs and traffic signals. When we drove down the street to our house, or what was left of it, we couldn't find it. It was then that I learned how dependent we are on the familiar landmarks and orienting factors of our environment in grounding us---allowing us to recognize where we are.
When I am out and about, I see men in slim trousers and suit coats. The color is not limited to their ties. They have on things like rose colored trousers, blue coats and patterned orange ties. They scoop up their little boys with shoulder length hair and head down the street, walking home. I'm a little lost in both time and space. Am I in Paris, France? When did the era of dark business suits and coordinated ties leave us? Doesn't one buckle a child into the car seat and jump in the car to go home? Where am I? Familiarity is relative, I guess. This same man would be lost in Texas.
I love the city! I love the row houses, the intriguing apartments, the high rise buildings of glass and steel and old brick and stone. The people walking on the streets bring a fascinating energy to the city. I feel excitement when I come downtown! I'm in Chicago!
I love broccoli, cheese, beef filet, bacon, cantaloupe, avocados, fried corn, chicken, pasta, chocolate, tomatoes, green beans, apple sauce, sauerkraut, pork, eggs, spinach,
tex-mex, cabbage soup, and a plethora of other foods. Do you see pizza on the list? That is because I do not like pizza. Chicago is famous for pizza. There are many "must try" spots around town for pizza. One of those is a place called Lou Malnotti's. They make Chicago Deep Dish Pizza. This is a pizza at least 3 inches thick. If you think you are running in to pick up a quick pizza after work---forget it. It takes a half hour to cook. There are many choices but the one they call "The Lou" is a vegetarian pizza with fresh tomatoes, spinach and lots of cheese. When the new missionaries arrive in the mission, we all have dinner at the mission home and this pizza is what is served. A huge wedge is on the plate. How do you eat a huge wedge of pizza that you don't like? One bite at a time. First bite down. I eat the second and then the fifth and then the last bite. I scoop another large wedge onto my plate and begin again! Who am I? I really don't know who this is, but she loves this Chicago Deep Dish Pizza!
I'm loving a lot of things about this mission!