and i don’t even like mexican food

Yesterday, child #3 came home from school and suggested we celebrate Cinco de Mayo. Technically, she suggested we celebrate it at one of her favorite restaurants, Chipotle. This was, she figured, her best shot at getting there. She knows full well that her mother has the will to celebrate every day, just as I promised.

A valiant effort, but being budget minded, I countered by hauling out the Best International Recipes cookbook. Out we went for the fixings for carnitas, guacamole, and whatever else struck our fancy in the Mexican section of the grocery store.

A connoisseur of custard, I suggested topping off the festivities with flan. She outvoted me by suggesting the Mexican bakery in the same strip mall. Just how does one child outvote me? Let’s just say it rarely takes too much persuasion to go to the Mexican bakery. Though it totally tanked the diet.

No, not a drop of hispanic blood in our family, but we had a marvelous time appreciating the celebration of another culture. A couple years ago, I had the bright idea during advent (spurred by a visit to Epcot Center) to cook from a diferent country every week until the new year. We had some . . . interesting . . . meals. But some that made the hit parade list. And I do believe the interest in other cultures has helped our kids all become considerably less picky eaters than their mother was (is) They have few issues with culinary adventure (despite my questionable cooking).

Recently, another writer asked me about my work, and I told her I had written one novel surrounding the underground railroad and was currently wroking on one about the Trail of Tears and another about illegal Mexican immigtants. She looked at me for explanation. “I guess . . . I just always gravitate toward telling the story of the underdog? Must be something about being the last of seven kids.” If that is my mission, I completely accept.

Happy day after Cinco de Mayo. Happy No Homework Day. Oh, do I have much to say about that. It may surprise you. But another post.


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