Nouvel Souffle

Après la tempête, je veux être le nouvel souffle.”

(After the storm, I want to be the new breath)

Legend of a poster shown in Sentinelle, a Netflix Original film

Tonight we decided to prepare a simple dinner: tagliarini with a dollop of olive oil, butter and parmesan cheese. Being a little blasé from all those fancy sauces preparations and photographic montages to present our pasta creations, we decided to go back to the incomparably sweet and tender memories of our Mother Gladys’ cooking.

This is exactly how she prepared the pasta in a simple yet nutritious way to rightly feed her husband and children.

Muchas gracias Mamita querida!

Watching the publicity of a supposedly new “travel and cooking program about Italy”, we could not help chuckle. The presenter, an American of Italian roots that kept his distance from the untidiness of the kitchen, watched as deli owners and chefs presented him with a sample, which triggered his farcical gestures and exclamations. A fallacy.

We have relatives and friends in the Italian Peninsula that own, or used to own, gastronomical enterprises that are now almost bankrupt, trying to survive with less traffic, the changing pandemic regulations and little financial relief. This kind of silly fantasy about a long gone pre-pandemic world, designed by the perpetually-behind-the-curve gurus of Madison Avenue, is pure falsehood. Once the pandemic restrictions are over, many of these establishments will be gone and , what is much worse, the general public will be more suspicious of sitting down in tight indoor spaces and will have less disposable income, especially if they have kids. Those that emerge out of the seclusion will be changed.

The Post-Pandemic world is right upon us and it calls for a more simple and practical lifestyle for educated people. We will continue to patronize the local restaurants maybe once or twice a week with take-out and delivery, besides sitting down a Saturday night or a Sunday lunch with the family or a “significant other.” We will resume our travel expeditions but there will be less visits to overpriced restos and more cooking in our Air BNB accommodations. Moreover, there will be slightly less emphasis on what’s inside your plate and more consideration for your partner.

We will push a new breath of kindness, sweetness and, pour quoi pas, some old-fashioned romanticism in our lives.

We must assume the drastic changes that the 2020 pandemic brought upon us and then build a new, better world.

Stay distant. Stay safe. Stay beautiful.

What do you think? Please tell us.

Don’t leave me alone.