Idol.

I remember the ride to the ferry terminal better than I should remember anything that happened more than half my life ago. It seems that I’m neglecting recent memories in favour of keeping the ones from so long ago, but that ride sticks out in my mind like a jewel.

It was spring and I was sprung from school early to go help clean up Camp Byng for a scout camp the following weekend. The place didn’t make any money; Venturers and Rovers were the labour.

In the car I was so excited. I was going to a camp where there were going to be actual boys to camp with! It was a revelation for newly-cute 14-year-old me.

We had to go get Amy first, though, and that was just about the best part of the whole weekend. I would have given anything to be Amy. She was Chinese-Canadian, was super-smart, cool and composed, and she could do anything, including use a chainsaw, and understand the math that I failed so effortlessly. And I! Got! To! Ride! With! Amy! To! The! Ferry!

Later on, I remember my mother telling the story. She claimed that when Amy got in the car, my voice dropped an octave and she stopped seeing my pulse race in my neck. She claimed it was then that she decided to love Amy.

At Horseshoe Bay we were early so went to find some lunch at a little cafe. I had chicken salad the same as Amy, as well as a kind of peaches and cream drink that was more like melted ice cream. I remember running my fingers over the raised-glass picture of a California-style mission, thinking that only Amy would know about a drink this cool, instead of something so pedestrian as Coke.

Amy’s a rocket scientist in California now. I’m nothing close to that spectacular. But that one trip to the ferry still lights my memories like the spring sunlight glinting off the little bottle of peaches and cream.

Things On Bread.

So I stopped into the bakery to get a cheese bun earlier today. The bakery is part of a chain. I generally like to support the little guy, but the bakery was close at hand and I like their cheese buns. So.

I’m waiting my turn while the yuppie in front of me dithers between the Cranberry Dessert Log and the Apple Custard Teatime Loaf or whatever, and I notice a glossy stack of paper in front of the till. It enthuses, “Fresh Recipe Ideas!” and has a picture of some bread with tomatoes, bocconcini cheese , and basil leaves on it. I look at this photo and weep for humanity. This is a Fresh Recipe Idea? Putting things on bread?

Hey! News Flash! You can put things on bread!

Now, for your gastronomic edification, I’ve put together a rough guideline to help you navigate this amazing new Fresh Recipe Idea of putting things on bread.

Dairy Products: Some dairy products are good on bread. Good: Cheese and butter. Not so good: Milk, yoghurt, ice cream.

Meat: Lots of meat goes well on bread. Good: Cold cuts, leftover roast beef, bacon. Not so good: Any meat still alive, such as a pekingese or a goldfish. They might fit on the bread, but don’t be fooled by that. Live meat, aka animals, are not good on bread.

Oil: In many Mediterranean countiries, the people combine olive oil with a little salt or balsamic vinegar and dip bread in it. This is all to the good. However, be leery of wantonly using random oils on bread. Not-good-on-bread oils include motor oil, mineral oil, and kerosene.

Vegetables: Many vegetables are nice on bread. Tomatoes and lettuce come to mind, as do cucumbers, either pickled or not. The English even have a thing they call a ‘chip buttie’, which is basically a French fry sandwich. However, there are a number of vegetables that don’t work on bread. These include carrots, broccoli and squash. These are not bread-friendly vegetables.

Thank you for your time. I hope this helps you out in the bold new gastronomical Fresh Recipe Idea of putting things on bread.

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