A little bit of meatball, a twirl of spaghetti, a square chunk of tomato sauce, a sprinkle of parmesan, and a fleck of salt. It was, without hyberbole, the perfect bite.
You know what I’m talking about.
And, you know that, when you take the perfect bite, it is a moment to be savored.
MMMmmm. That was delicious.
Do you slow down? Do you savor?
My father used to make meatballs when I was a kid, singing in the kitchen as he cooked. His recipe was fussy: Italian bread soaked in milk, minced garlic, a bit of spicy Italian sausage, a whisper of lemon zest. Next, cooling time. Then, browning time in a hot skillet with olive oil. Finally, into the homemade sauce.
None of us cook like that all the time. Some of us have that one special occasion or recipe. For my dad, it was meatballs. He smiled as he moved the balls in the pan. He gave them three syllables: meat-a-balls.
Ahhh, so much joy. So much savoring. For meatballs. A peasant food. Cheap. Not something you’d serve at a dinner party to impress people.
Sometimes the simple tastes and ordinary moments are ones that we savor the most. Over and over again.
The perfect bite.
The perfect thank you.
The perfect smile from someone you love.
The perfect email after a long, terrible day.
The perfect joke in an awkward moment.
The perfect flower in your yard.
The perfect sigh from your contented sleeping dog.
The perfect sunset through the trees.
Today, and every day of your life, there will be moments.
Moments to be savored.
Recently, I told my friend that I wake up in the morning feeling grateful. I love that morning moment. I savor it.
My living situation or my life may not be savory to everyone, but I am safe and warm and healthy and headed to a job worth doing and into a day worth living. I have running water and heat when I’m cold.
I have delicious things to eat, like spaghetti and meatballs.
I lost my Dad when I was 18.
I would give anything for him to be in my kitchen cooking and singing again. I don’t get that. Instead, I have beautiful memories to savor.
We can be thankful for life and death. Death reminds us that, if we are still alive, there are moments ahead to be savored.
Beautiful, important, hungry reader: There is something to be savored in your day today. Look for it. Acknowledge it. Take a moment. Breathe. Give thanks for that moment. Give thanks for all that led up to that moment. Give thanks for all the moments that will come.
Hey boo, this is the one life you get to live.
Slow down. Take the perfect bite.