Jerry hadn’t been feeling well for a few days. Thankfully, he’s much better today. There’s a stomach bug going around and he appears to have had it. Among Jerry’s many strengths and assets, the ability to cope with illness and/or injury (however minor) is not one. And he sees no point in suffering if he has to do it silently. Some years ago, Jerry had a very clever doctor who told him he had a catastrophic imagination. But, like everything else to do with Jerry, he can laugh at himself. Maybe not when he’s suffering the permanently debilitating effects of a stubbed toe (“It’s severely broken! I know it!”), but eventually — once the toe has miraculously healed — he will laugh at himself.
Before Jerry and I met, when he was still in his 20s and living in Seattle, Washington, he “very seriously” (his words) sliced his finger “nearly off” (again, his words) while preparing dinner. He quickly rinsed the wound and then bound it tightly in a dish towel, maintaining constant pressure. He then called a friend and told him he needed to be rushed to the emergency room. When he arrived at the hospital he told the intake nurse what had happened and she carefully unwrapped the towel. They couldn’t find a wound. They couldn’t even find a tightly sealed seam.
“Well, let me see,” Jerry said as he perused his digits, “I’m pretty sure it was this finger.”
The nurse smiled and said, “I think you’ll live.” She then asked if he would like her to put a Band-Aid on it. Of course, he said, “yes.”
But, as usual, I digress. The point of this post was to share with you my trip to the supermarket. As you by now probably already know, I do not like to cook. As you also probably already know, in my world, putting a teabag in a cup of microwaved water qualifies as cooking. So, when Jerry is feeling under the weather, if he wants a nice bowl of chicken soup, he’s probably going to be making it himself. Unless he’s got some in the freezer. I can rise to the occasion and reheat if absolutely necessary.
|JERRY’S CHICKEN SOUP ON THE STOVE.
HE USED TO MAKE MY GRANDMOTHER’S RECIPE. NOW HE JUST WINGS IT.
So, as I mentioned, Jerry hadn’t been feeling well. He knew some home-made chicken soup would help. But, he gave our last container of chicken soup to Teré the other day when she wasn’t feeling well. He told me last night he would make some fresh chicken soup if I wouldn’t mind going to the supermarket. Of course I was only too glad to go. It was the least I could do — well, sadly, it was the most I could do, truth be told.
What you may not appreciate is that, for me, going to the supermarket is just barely one tiny step away from cooking. I did become proficient at grocery shopping in Irvine (always with a very specific list from Jerry), but I have done very little of it here. Jerry knows his way around the supermarket at El Corte Inglés. I do not. He has also learned many more of the Spanish names for the products than I have, such as “nabo” for turnip. I told Jerry to make a list and I would get whatever he needed. He ended up writing a grocery list … and drawing a letter-coded map of the store.
All I needed was a tag pinned to my snow suit (right next to my mittens), “My name is Mitchell. If lost, please return me to…” Anyway, there’s no way I ever would have found the chicken broth… or the turnips.
|I WON’T READ A RECIPE, BUT I’M REALLY GOOD WITH A MAP.|