Monday, July 5, 2010

Lunch for Frukost

Lunch for frukost. That's we had. Lunch for breakfast almost every day, and I loved it. Having grown in the far reaches of Southeast Texas, bordering bayous and swimming in swamplands, I grew up on grits, gravy, green beans, and one other traditionally trashy staple. Breakfast for supper. The few times my mom would cook, and when I say "few" I mean pizza delivery guys knew us by name (as did McDonald's drive-thru workers), she would scramble up all the 69 cent Grade-A eggs we had, sprinkle them with Colby-jack cheese, pepper them with a vengeance, and make hash browns (pre-cooked of course). This would supplement our smörgåsbord of white bread toast, butter, and jelly (don't you dare call it jam). It was as gross, grossly unhealthy and at the same time, as heavenly good as such artery-clogging garbage might sound. Grease 'n grits, I chomped my way through supper, slurping it down with a near-grainy sugared sweet tea (iced naturally, but to us that was the only type of tea, so no need for specification). I'd swat at mosquitoes, then awaken to a bloated belly and feel both hungry and full at the same time again. Time has passed, and both tears and pounds have dropped from me. I now nurse an unnatural obsession with healthy food and breaking from my invisibly connected past which shows itself through in this one meal.

Having lunch for frukost instead of frukost for dinner (frukost meaning the Swedish word for breakfast). Simon would chop the cucumber, papprakor (red bell pepper), and set out the kanel (cinnamon) to go with min kaffe (always French-pressed). He'd fill the glass bottle with tap water, set lettuce-leaf-adorned plates on the table, and break off just enough knackebrod to keep me both happy and from feeling guilty at the American-demon, "Carbs." We'd eat healthily, lightly, and happily. We'd talk, and sit at a table... Things my family NEVER did! We'd play with Spotify (think of it as a better version of Pandora), make jokes about one another, and slowly work on his delicious, soft bread from the bakery 'round the corner. He'd use his ever practical cheese slicer to make micro-thin films of flavor for that bread and I'd heartily twist both his salt and pepper mill to my heart's content, trying to drench the tomat och gurka in as much sodium as one would need to have a full-blown heart attack by the age of 30.

I write this from the Stockholm-Arlanda airport, but I feel as though I've already arrived back "home." I just thought to myself, "Here," in America, "We rush and rush to do things. We have no time to eat healthily so we get junk food or calorie-laden meal bars, then take 2 hours out of our day for the gym or some boot-camp or that new Ab-Ercize video we got on the Home Shopping Network." We have no time for our friends, spouses, wives, husbands, kids, that book we're writing *guilty cough, those online courses we've been meaning to take, or even enjoying the sanity of our own life! Maybe we should eat breakfast. Simon said the ever-nagging phrase himself, "It's the most important meal of the day," and if like me... you don't necessarily like "breakfast," then by all means just say you're being Swedish, and have lunch.... For frukost.

1 comment:

  1. Amber- This post is priceless! I also said "There is a Little French Woman living inside my very American body," for what you just said above. I rejoice while eating a baguette with my food saturated in olive oil and washing it down with wine. Amen to the European/non American way of life.