One thing I have been in 2018 is scattered. First I was a whirling dervish, then I crashed like a bad 90s band. So tonight I’ve been doing what I always do when I desperately need to collect myself: I’m cooking. There’s something about the slow deliberation of cooking–the foraging for ingredients, the chopping and scrubbing and peeling, the tuning into what wishes to be prepared–that is more centering than lotus pose, tadasana, or even the New York Times crossword puzzle.
Simmering on the stove is my first real kitchen endeavor of the year–a moroccan lamb stew, with cinnamon, lemon peel, ginger, garbanzo beans, tomato paste, chicken broth, apricots, onion, carrot and parsnip, bits of cilantro and mint and garlic and cumin tossed in for good measure. Like all good witches, I’ve gone way off book, and am trusting the wind to tell me what to sprinkle in my cauldron. My house smells great, but only tomorrow will reveal if my culinary magic is still in place. It’s the day after that tells the real story.