Anyone who knows me knows I love food and red wine.
With a Jamaican father and a French mother, how could I not be a foodie? Because I draw on the spices native to Jamaican culture and the cream and butter that are so much a part of French cuisine, I am proud to say that I am a pretty good cook.
When I lived in California with my ex-husband, who was running for Congress, I hosted parties for governors and dignitaries. I often served a hundred guests buffet-style. Many Americans asked if the food was catered, and I proudly told them, “No, it’s all homemade.” I served such dishes as Jamaican mini–jerk sliders, whole lemon-roasted chickens, my famous mac and cheese, and pineapple upside-down cake (my dad’s favorite), and no one left my parties hungry. Most folks left with a plate of food in their hand.
I grew up in Jamaica, where certain things are not as abundant as in the United States, and I often think about the times in the mid-1970s when you would walk into a Jamaican supermarket and the shelves would be empty. Even if you had money, not much was available to buy, and anything you did find was very expensive. Thank God my parents were in the retail business—they knew when shipments were coming into stores and could make do.
I often wonder if Americans understand how lucky they are to live in a world where supermarkets are always stocked with food and water. When you live without these things, they gain greater value to you. You develop a sense of deep gratitude for God’s many blessings. You learn to live with less. You realize that designer products and fancy cars do not bring happiness. You learn that the simple things—like a nice glass of red wine and a slice of good cheese—bring true happiness.
So I say no way to a world without red wine and cheese.
Until next time.