Nights in spent catching up with an old friend. Watching Mad Men over a meal of salty canned clams and corn pasta, arugula standing in for the black pepper. It's common food around here, delicious and economical, but it kind of sings in its own way. I like the taste of clams with corn pasta done al dente, the way the parmesan interacts with the arugula and the chili flakes. I love the garlic butter that resonates in the background, the way it pulls all of the ingredients together, and I like the bite of the pasta against the softness of the sauce. Consumed with a glass of VQA red wine while sprawled on the couch, it feels absolutely luxurious. A couple of dark chocolate squares for dessert? Mais oui!
There've been many good moments lately. My sister came to visit this past weekend and I made her coconut blueberry pancakes, a recipe I'll share later this week. Blueberries aren't in season quite yet around these parts of what I can tell, and the crappy ones from Oregon made for a lousy substitute, but I can envision them being made with good blueberries, the tart-sweet variety, the kind that leaves blueberry juice stained on your clothes. I've been reading more these days, and trying to catch more films, and find myself taking short walks in the early evening just as people finish their al fresco dinners, gulp back that last taste of wine. It's nice to breathe in the summer air, a little humid and still but gentler this year. It's nice to walk aimlessly and conjure up wishes. Romantic, isn't it? I like to listen to jazz while making dinner, glass of wine in hand, or to country music as I mop my floors. This is summertime in Toronto. Drinking mediocre sangria on a large patio with an old friend. Walking around and witnessing the Pride festivities over the weekend, eating a small scoop of Jamoca Almond Fudge ice cream and happily lapping up the sunshine. Reading about M.F.K. Fisher's life over a lunch hour; reading about women who eat over another. Gearing up to pick mulberries. Contemplating the fall, considering my future. Making lists and planning projects. Is this what happiness looks like? I think so, indeed I do, and I am glad for it.