Today I inadvertently left my phone charging at home and didn’t realize it until I was halfway to work. I toyed with the idea of going back to get it but then thought better of it. As one of those people who often complains about modern society’s need to be permanently tethered to the internet (and yes, I do include myself in that statement) I thought I could manage the day without the little box of joy in my pocket for the duration of the workday.
All went well throughout the morning and suddenly I realized the time and had to grab a late lunch before the cafeteria closed its doors. All my usual lunch companions were unavailable so I popped to the cafeteria to fly solo. To be honest, this does seem to happen quite often, and I really should do something about my time management skills. However, as I sat down with my food it was only then that I realized how reliant on my handheld companion I have become – no, not as a phone, but as a source of “amusement” during such solitary periods. It’s not that I was being particularly anti-social; the cafeteria was very sparsely populated at this time and most customers were doing similar to what I had intended, namely browsing the web, anyway.
“OK,” I thought, time for a moment of quiet reflection. It was during this brief interlude that I also made the decision that , for today I must really taste my food. I admit this idea was sparked, in part, by the memory of consuming a few strawberries last night that were some of the most delicious I have eaten in a very long time. So, combined with an attempt to keep to my self-imposed policy of healthy eating (at work, at least) wherein I had made up an eclectic mix of items from the salad bar which included a strawberry and spinach leaf salad, I commenced to consume my carefully collected comestibles.
Now, it may seem like a trite thing to say but, in all honesty, I wonder how often we do really taste what we are eating? I can only speak for myself when I say that rarely do I truly appreciate the nuances of flavor and actually savor the subtlety of the food that I eat, although I will hypothesize this also applies to many diners with whom I have shared a restaurant, at least from their outward behavior. Eating slowly and actually trying to appreciate the textures and flavors of each of the components of a forkful of food is quite an eye-opening experience. Or perhaps it would be better to call it a tongue-freshening experience.
The upshot of this exercise was that I partook of a relatively simple meal, in solitude, and actually took my time to truly enjoy it. It’s quite interesting trying to slowly taste each mouthful to the full and, in some ways and interesting, almost meditative activity. I invite you to slow down and try it too!
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