The Other White Meat

Right now we live above a restaurant. I’ve been calling it a diner, because it seems culturally accurate. Good breakfasts, hearty meals, nice people – a welcoming place to be. It has been a good stopping point for C and I, especially because on a Sunday about a month ago we were out of housing options.   We were in the midst of contemplating the pros and cons of living underneath a stranger's deck and researching the temperature ratings on our sleeping bags when we got the call about this place.  We moved in that Tuesday.

As you probably imagine though, there are some quirks to living above a diner. Here are just a few to get your wheels spinning:

Pork. Imagine the aroma of sizzling bacon emerging in nearly every early morning dream. It’s heavenly for a day – maybe even a week – but after a month, you won’t want to touch the stuff. You’ll want to go completely vegan, trust me.  Especially when it starts to develop anthropomorphic characteristics. No one wants to find him or herself swimming the Caribbean with a pod of dolphins made of pork fat. No one.

Kitchenless living. Think back on college. Take away the dining hall. Envision those “home cooked” meals you concocted out of your dorm room. Ramen? Kraft mac’n’cheese? Pizza every Sunday night? Anything more creative could blow up like a fourth grade science project, like that chicken rice goulash my roommates and I tried to serve our guy friends.  Or did we call it porridge?  Well anyway, this is our life of late. Except I’ve attempted bravery in the face of culinary challenge. I have in my arsenal a small microwave, a crock-pot, and our trusty jetboil camp stove. Oh, and a coffeemaker, but we’ll get to that another day - I’ll probably devote a whole post to small disasters at some point soon. I won’t go too deep here, but just imagine pouring a bag of chunky kibbles’n’bits into a steaming crock-pot of pasta pasty play dough noodles, and you’ve got our first home-cooked meal. Made in our bathroom.

Guests? What guests? I have developed a soft spot for city-dwellers who live in shipping-crate sized apartments. Granted, our apartment is not the smallest place we’ve inhabited together, and it is very ample space for the two of us when we’re here alone, but things get tricky when you want to invite other kids into the sandbox. See, we’re recent transplants here in the frozen tundra, and we’d like to make some new friends, but we have found ourselves at a slight disadvantage. How do you host company when your “non-bedroom” room still has bunk beds? How do you warn company that they are welcome to sit at the dining table, but they might get broadsided when a) the front door swings open, b) you have to get the butter out of the mini fridge, or c) someone needs to slither their parka out from the closet rail behind them. Did I mention that our table is in an old closet?

Romance. I’m not even going to get into this. Use your imagination.

House-pitality. The friends that we do have up here in paradise have been regular unsung heroes. We’ve probably spent half of our nights at the homes of this family or that couple, and have felt perfectly at ease with each. They’ve even sent us home with food we can microwave for ourselves later (saints. saints. saints.). Part of me wonders if they might be worried for our health in these conditions, but it’s so sweet that I’ve decided to forget about it. Remember all of those food-laden care packages you received in college? Those weren’t just for show. The brownies were laced with fish oil. The orange lifesavers helped you fight off scurvy. Go give your grandma a kiss for crushing mono with spritz cookies.

All in all, it’s been a pretty awesome first month. We move into a cabin on Sunday, and my kitchen woes will be over. I’ve never been so excited for a gas stove and a freezer.

I guess it's time to kiss the pork dolphins goodbye.


  1. No mention of the twin beds? I'm disappointed.

  2. you're blogging! yay. i think your butt looks great in a parka, for the record.
    pork dolphins...i think i can draw you a picture of that. :)
    hope life in the cabin is going well...does it have internet???

  3. Dont continue development of the soft spot for city-dwellers. Just pity.


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