Thursday, July 29, 2010

Eat, Pray, Live, Laugh

I haven't read the book Eat, Pray, Love, and I'm not knowledgeable about the author who wrote it. So it's not fair for me to say it looks like the story of a spoiled little rich... *a'hem* grown woman whose boyfriend broke up with her so she took this amazing trip to the Far East.

Plus that would reveal an unpleasant, green-eyed attitude I try to resist... ;o)

The movie trailers do make me think about food, though.

I was in Baton Rouge last weekend, and I have to confess. Growing up in south Louisiana, *I* was very spoiled. I had no idea that the fact that any schmo off the street can whip up a delicious dinner for you at the drop of a hat was unique.

It's not that hard. Just take three ingredients--OK, four: butter (or olive oil), onion, bell pepper, and garlic. Add anything to that with some tomatoes and a touch of cayenne pepper, and it always comes out right.

Looking back, all the good times in the 30 years I lived there centered around big, delicious meals. A high school friend recently asked me if I was homesick. LTM: always.

But there are problems back home. The schools have changed, the population has changed since Katrina, and I think when you live somewhere and have a golden time there, moving back to recapture it... well, it never really works out, does it?

JRM and I had this conversation about Indy a while back. As many happy memories as we have of being there, it's not the same now either.

So life moves on.

You live places, you share a lot of laughs with people you love. You stay connected (hopefully--I know I'll get some feedback on that right now...)

Also while we were in Baton Rouge, my youngest daughter turned seven.

My dad and I were charged with getting her cake, which we did. She wanted a big cookie with purple icing that said "Happy Birthday, Laura!"

I tried to prepare her--we hadn't actually planned this (I have a big party planned for both daughters next week), so we might not be able to find that exact thing...

And then we did. We found exactly what she wanted.

Then I got sidetracked looking at something, Dad tried to help me, and he dropped the cake. Naturally, it landed upside down.

For a moment we stood there staring at it, stunned until we carefully picked it up and...

The nice thing about cookie cakes is if you drop them just right, they don't break. This one only had a little smudged icing that was easily fixed.

And then I started to giggle... Before long we were absolutely cracking up. We laughed the whole way home, and all day whenever I thought about my poor dad's face right after the cake hit the floor I chuckled again.

Anyone who doesn't know my dad won't understand that he's always been a tad on the klutzy side... (it's where I get it from!) And my daughter's named for him, so she tends to be his little sidekick.

I don't know about you guys, but it's been a tough year. And I don't get a trip to India to make it all better... or some semi-hunky French dude.

But I'm happy that looking back, there's no way I can feel sorry for myself (or be sour-grapesey with the author of EPL).

Lately I've been praying all the time. And I'm trying not to be selfish with it. I pray you see the ways you're so blessed and lucky, too.

Have a great weekend, reader friends! Book review Monday~


Candyland said...

Ha! I haven't seen it and I have no desire to. I've heard the book is really well written, but I can't jump on that train. I don't run away to other countries to find myself (bc I can't afford it!)and no semi-hunky man (just a fully hunky husband).

I learn to deal with things by pushing through, not running away from.

RosieC said...

That's a great story about the cookie cake. I would never have been so lucky :) It's always hard to go back a place you've lived before. I've done it (too) many times, since my dad was in the military and we moved a lot. It's never the same as you remember, and nostalgia is always stronger than memories of the negative times.

I will say that EPL isn't exactly the way you put it. I won't disagree with the spoiled part so much--I can definitely see that in her--but there's so much more going on there. I've really enjoyed it so far, and found a lot of things I can relate to and can help me grow to be a better person. If you're at all interested in my take on it (which you obviously don't have to be at all!) check out the posts on my blog tagged with "book club".

Okay, enough with the ramble and the self-promo (though that's really not my intention at all!). Happy birthday to your girls!

Natasha said...

Read the book, not planning to watch the movie. EPL was not bad- she is quite a likeable character, even if she does get to go to exotic places and do exotic things.

BUT, when you come to India, I would hope you do not come to Pray. So much more to do here, specially EAT.

Unknown said...

Funny, I just read a post that goes hand-in-hand with this one over at Spunk on a Stick. (L.Diane's post is HERE)

I'm originally from upstate New York, but never felt like that was "home." (There were too many kids in our family and not enough patience; my world views clashed with the small town mentality; etc.) After college, I lived on the west coast and then back on the east coast, then spent eight years in Africa and Europe. Now hubby, the kids and I live in Georgia. I'm still not "home," but one day I hope to find that place. Do nomads ever settle down? I guess, as long as I'm gathering fodder for my fiction, a traveler's life is okay with me.

Ummm...cookie cake...

And purple icing -- your daughter shares my excellent taste (LOL)!

LTM said...

@CL--I must confess, I often daydream of running away to some exotic locale when things get tough... :D So I'm probably a little jealous.

But not about the French dude (who I really think is semi-yucky, but that's mean.) It's hard to beat JRM~ :o)

LTM said...

@RC--I'm being too harsh, I know. I was irritable when I saw the trailer, and Julia Roberts complaining and then taking a trip to Dubai struck me wrong... LOL!! :D

I'll check out your review. My book club is talking about reading it. Thanks! :o)

LTM said...

@Rayna--If I ever make it to India, I'm looking you up and we're going to PLAY! And have Tamarind~ :D

@Nicole--are Southerners scary? ;p I've joked w/Mom friends about which of our children has "too much redneck." Those would be the ones who preface sentences with "Hey, Mom! Watch this..." She's right though, West Coasters drive very SLOOW...

But now I'm v. jealous of all your travels! Africa... ooo... I've been to W. Europe, but I'd love to go somewhere exotic. :D

Creepy Query Girl said...

My mom was reading that book during her visit here! the story reminded me a little of 'Under the tuscan Sun'. She said she might send it to me when she's done. I love food, but I fear the book might make me hungry. Cute story about the cake! There are other ways of feeling better besides a trip across the world, ethnic cooking and hot men. Give me ice cream, popcorn and Titanic and I'm good to go.

RosieC said...

I have to say I know nothing about the movie, and JR is not my favorite actress. Honestly, I probably won't see the movie (well, maybe on Netflex a few years from now). But I do think the book is worth the read.

Ex-pat Odessa said...

I can TOTALLY see your dad's face!! That IS funny!!!
Glad you guys had a good visit, and yeah, ever since Katrina, it hasn't been the same - which sucks, actually from my friends tell me, Houston isn't the same anymore since Katrina either.

LTM said...

@RC--I bet the movie'll be pretty good... I'd rather see the lolcats version. :D

@Odie--it was like five seconds of silence, we carefully picked up the cookie cake, and then I busted out laughing. Especially after he muttered, "Let's go. I'm feeling disgusted with myself."

LTM said...

@Katie! I missed your comment earlier. I gotta say, though, I'm not sure you can play. You live in Paris after all. Just walk outside and it all goes away... ;p

DL Hammons said...

A graduate of LSU in 1981...I try to get back to Baton Rouge at least once a year to catch a football or baseball game. You are right about going back...its never the same. That's because our memories filter out the mundane and add a glow to the special occassions.

LTM said...

Yay, DL! Geaux, Tigers! You're right about the memories. At least one thing never changes: The Chimes! ;p