Silvena's Father

And so, it’s another fine morning and you're driving your car, and on the radio they're interviewing Silvena Rowe and you remember her as the celebrity chef with the most beautiful cookbooks ever, the cookbooks you love so much that you give them away as presents to loved ones. 

And in the interview she’s asked a question about her father and what he means to her, - and up until then you had felt that your morning is just fine, you know, as in ‘routine’, - but she bursts out crying and sobbing at his mention. 

And for three or four minutes she can't for the life of her keep it together, and the interviewer isn't helping, prodding her, and asking more about her father’s memory. 

And she finally manages to squeeze in a few words between the sniffles. And it hits you in the head like a bulldozer that this world famous chef, the lady who has it all, who was only a minute ago explaining how it was difficult for a woman to lead a kitchen and that she must be a bitch, and that she becomes a bitch, all for the sake of getting the job done, is now in pieces, emotionally, on live radio, unable to utter one complete word, much as she tried.

And finally she manages to tell his story: how he was so much larger than life, a Bulgarian Turk who was a 'bon vivant', and that how when he died, she told her sister “You know what? his soul is now free, so I’m going to claim for it for me, if you don't mind. I’m going to be him”.

And you’re struck by all of this, and you remember her amazing dreamy cookbooks that seem to belong to another world, but most of all you are struck by this wonderful strangeness, that magical strangeness, and then she says that most of all she remembered his smell, a beautiful  smell so unique that she named one of her cookbooks after it: “Purple Citrus and Sweet Perfume”.

And you drive on, and the day is just starting, and you think, what a day to be alive.