|To explain a Russian Feast...
How I Met the Zaharoffs
Kak Ya Poznakomilsya S'Zaharovym
the luck of the irish, and i'm not even irish
Andy in the zone and toasting
- I n g r e d i e n t s -
As mentioned, the story I tell myself is that I'm lucky. So here's how the luck unfolded.
I had a general contractor that installed some metal windows according to the company that
made them, and they leaked. I wasn't going to pay for anything because nobody got anything
they wanted. So even though no party had what they wanted, the window company initiated
a law suit in order to try and get me to pay for something that was dysfunctional.
I told them that I wanted to pay them in the worst way, but I wanted windows that didn't leak.
That argument didn't seem to impress them, so I had to hire an attorney. He was a good attorney
and he suggested we hire this practical guy that had lots of experience repairing things that
hadn't work out so well. That was Andy Zaharoff of Redwood Empire Building Restoration.
Due to Andy's interventions, things progressed well, the law suit was averted,
and Andy became my new General Contractor.
Now I was on a roll... let's fix everything that didn't work. I wanted him to take out a built-in
barbecue in the kitchen that looked great, but never drafted properly so grilling something
was an assurance that you were going to hear every smoke alarm in the house go off.
While Andy was taking it out, he said "What do you want for this barbecue? My parents are
remodeling and they have a perfect place for it." I said, "I don't know what I want for it,
why don't we trade for something?" I knew his mother was Russian and she was a great cook,
so I said, "Why don't we trade for a Russian feast?" Andy sealed the deal with,
"Sure, my mom is always ready for a party." So not having a clue at the time what I traded for,
it turned out to be the deal of the century. What I got was so far in excess of the
material goods that I gave, that I am embarrassed that I didn't throw-in half the house.
- T o o l s -
The both of us had a series of terrible events (changes in domestic regime), but as luck
would have it, Andy and I grew closer,
Sure enough, we had a Russian Feast. Luckily more than one!
What a blast! It was totally new to me, but during one particular feast I had an ancient sort of
old-soul experience. That feeling moved me to propose the next part of the deal.
First the background:
my mom had died in 2002 and of course, no matter what your relationship with your mother,
there is a hole, a vacuum, a void. I had lived long enough with that void that I had a few
of the tools to understand both the nature of a void and to understand some of the preceding
relationship with my mother. If I had rushed in to fill that void, I would have never understood
all that was brought to bear, but rather I lived with it for long enough to have
more tools handed to me to help me understand and tell my story.
Nevertheless, apparently the time was right for amending the void, and it happened at a
Russian Feast. I remember sitting there at the head of the table and an overwhelming feeling
came to me. Overwhelming but not so overwhelming that I didn't remember a little bit of
politeness and protocol. But I had to get that feeling out. So I turned to Andy's mom,
Alla, leaned over and said, "Now think this over, you don't need to respond right now...
But, would your tribe like to join my tribe?"
I sat back up straight, blinking in my astonishment of what I had said and what it meant.
No sooner that I had my second rapid flutter of my eyelids, than Alla said,
And that was it.
I had an adopted mother and my tribe had the blessed company of the Zaharoff tribe.
- T h e B i g P i c t u r e -
What the mutual adoption process and the tribal gathering meant was still to be revealed to me.
But it is alluded to in the ingredients list of the Theory of Russian Feasting.
- T h e P r o c e s s -
The real understanding got going at Russian Easter, a holy day and feasting day.
That day centers on the idea of Christ, with the idea that Christ has elements of the human
and has elements of God. And if that's not enough, the idea that He
had risen from -what people of that time took to be- the dead....
It was there on that day, the day that comes with so much hope, and the elixir of springtime,
it was there that I began to get it.
What did I get? That bringing the tribe together, with unwavering love, with the strength of
tradition, on such a great day, is the way that love is softly forged.
And we go from there.
- T o T h e A p p e t i z e r T a b l e -
So that deep background acts as my offering of a story of appetizing.
Let us get ourselves to the kitchen, so we can get to a table that is extraordinarily well set.
I can't wait 'til the party.