Is re-arranging a spice cabinet a sign of diminishment?

Oh, not of the spices. Although it could, if you run into an un- or mis-labeled bottle containing a smear of something unidentifiable. Then you pull it out and get agitated about what to do, especially when you discover you’ve thrown out black mustard seeds instead of the black sesame seeds you thought you tossed.

Perspicacious readers might be having an ah-ha moment here, realizing that I’m talking about my spice cabinet and its mistress, i.e., me. (I could have described me as a dominatrix, but the spices dominate.)

There are needs. Cloves. I’ve been out of cloves for a long time. There is mystery in the contents of a bottle I suspect is lovage but can’t confirm. Years ago, when I first encountered lovage it was in a green market and was leafy, not a dried herb in a bottle. I don’t remember what I used to make with lovage but do remember it was wonderful.

That reminds me I haven’t found sorrel in decades and fresh sorrel makes a great soup with lentils. Outside of Asia, sorrel is a/k/a lemon grass. And that is precisely how it tastes, like grass infused with lemons. Really special.

I had a bit of trouble alphabetizing the spices. Mustard seeds had migrated to the wrong end of a shelf and it caused me to fidgit. There does seem to be a missing cell in my brain regarding the alphabet. Years ago, a really perspicacious (notice this is the second time I used this word) boyfriend pointed out my 12 feet of LPs proved I was Jewish: they were alphabetized right to left. I hadn’t noticed.

What I am noticing, though, is that I’m tripping over the hems of my slacks. Either they have grown longer or I have lost some weight.

In a world in which multiple complex events occupy much of my attention, it may be that folding into a person who re-alphabetizes her spices (and maybe hems her trousers) is OK.


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