Wednesday, August 21 2019

burgers, chores, interns, and vancouver

Dear Journal,

Yesterday was a bit of a rough one. I had a pretty busy day at work, bouncing from one thing to another, and I didn't get any writing done. I still have today and tomorrow to finish the intern blog, but the way I see it, most of it probably has to get done this afternoon, so coming down to the wire.

After work, I took Rod to Hy-Vee and we picked up some burgers. Marissa was in the mood for something easy, so I just grabbed some pre-made burger patties and buns. After starting the grill and cutting up the toppings, we all hung out outside to enjoy the charcoal smell. Somehow, I pulled the burgers off the grill just a bit early, and I had already gone on to add the toppings, so I couldn't throw them back on. Luckily none of us got really sick, but the meal didn't sit right in my stomach, and I could tell that Rod wasn't sleeping well. I stuck his burger in the microwave for a whole minute to finish cooking it, but maybe it was the grease or something.

Messing up dinner is a crummy feeling, isn't it? For how happy it can make you feel watching people get up from the table for seconds or wolf down leftovers late at night, there's an equal and opposite reaction when your food makes people sick.

I spent about an hour cleaning up the kitchen. On Tuesday's I move everything off the counter tops and Windex everything, then I sweep the floor. It was also knife sharpening day. Once a month, I sharpen our six nicest knives with a whetstone. I run them through the dishwasher again to make sure there are no metal filings around, then rub the wood cutting board down with mineral oil.

It felt good to sort of lose myself in kitchen chores yesterday. I liked having time to think and collect myself after a busy day and a botched dinner. After chores, I sat on the couch with Marissa and watched some TV. I perused my usual YouTube channels to stock up on recipe ideas. After tonight's burger mishap, I could use a good comeback. Later in the evening, Marissa got up to heat up some leftover fried fish from yesterday, so I got to have that warm feeling after all.

Today is a busy morning. On Wednesdays I meet with each of the interns for some 1-on-1 time, asking them about their week, getting feedback, or just chit-chatting. Those 1-on-1s lead right into a farewell intern lunch. After lunch, I'm probably going to hide out in a quiet room and knock out some writing.

While sipping coffee just now, I got to staring at our computer wallpaper. I set up a little program on our dining room computer that randomly changes the wallpaper every fifteen minutes, sourcing the choices from a folder that I filled up with random pictures. Marissa even added a bunch yesterday too. Right now it's set to a picture I took off the back porch of the place we stayed at in Vancouver. We have a few pics from up right against the railing, but this one is just a shot from my chair by the sliding glass door, and all you can see is my knees in front of a few feet of concrete. You can still see the beautiful city, but it's behind the railing, which runs up the rest of the picture. Marissa and I were too spooked to hang out right up against the waist high metal railing - it was just too high and the railing was too flimsy. I like this picture because it really captures the sentiment of the trip. Vancouver was a beautiful city, but unexpectedly gritty and a little dangerous, and we had to experience it with just a bit of hesitation.

Time to get going. Hope you all have a wonderful day today. If you too messed up last night's dinner, don't sweat it. Just keep your cutting board clean, your knives sharp, and try again tonight.

Let's have a Wednesday!