In our home, the dinning room is at the center of the activity. One reason for this is we all love to eat. Maybe on an unconscious level we are reliving all the good food we eat when we are sitting at the dining room table doing things other then eating. The memories of flavors have a power to shape our world and it is vastly under rated. If Helen of Troy’s beauty launched a thousand ships, Leda’s Baklava brought them all back.
There is an architectural reason for this too, the dining room is the central room of the building. We have to walk through it to get to any other part of the house. Once again, we are reminded of food as we go to other rooms to do other things.
No expectations of staying under fed in this old house.
The dining room is the family’s vault full of good memories. All the birthday parties, raucous times at dinners and celebrations on holidays have value no gold bar, no bank note can match. Even the hours of helping the kids with homework, sewing costumes for school plays, and filling out forms for field trips are now fondly recalled.
The mind rarely looks ahead and back in the same way. This room has taught me that. Now that the kids are in high school and collage, the dinning room is not as busy as it use to be. When they were toddlers and in grade school I wished that the dinning room had less traffic and that whirl of activity was up stairs out of sight. But now that it is nearly gone I miss it.
Now, many of the little moments I see there have the solitary feel of a still life. They no longer over flow with that confusion of amore di famiglia and chaotic joy they once did. But I am not sad about the change.
This room has taught me something else too.
Whether big or small, exciting or mundane, cherish every moment.
Thank God for all of them and keep them close at hand.