|Pipestem Resort State Park|
Courtesy: West Virginia Department of Commerce
Our first morning, at the restaurant overlooking Bluestone River Gorge, my mom ate a fruit plate. Served on a decorative bed of romaine, she asked the waitress, "I'd hate to see this beautiful lettuce go to waste. Could I get some salad dressing?" Mortified--I was still a teenager, after all--I rejoiced that the hostess hadn't seated other diners within earshot.
|After my mom ate her fruit, she was left with a |
decorative bed of lettuce. Courtesy: BBQ Junkie
Then, teetotaling Aunt Ethel grabbed the salad dressing, downing it in one gulp as if it were a shot of whiskey, exclaiming, "I like salad dressing!" While many people do enjoy salad dressing, few favor it enough to drink straight; that's why it doesn't come in 12-packs. A child of The Great Depression, she might've more accurately declared, "I hate waste!"
We could just chuckle about Aunt Ethel, proclaiming it silly to pretend drinking the salad dressing really accomplished anything, other than assuaging consciences.
But perhaps it did. A refreshing change of pace, she set an example, that food is something to be valued, not squandered without a thought. If Aunt Ethel could drink a ramekin of salad dressing that she didn't even buy, how can the rest of us fail to use what we've actually purchased? Yet, estimates state Americans waste over 30% of the food that enters their homes.
|Courtesy: Bob's Healthful Kitchen|
*People continue to waste food, while donations to charities are down. If you're wasting, you're not giving as you could.
*On Thanksgiving day, we say we're thankful for our food, but a look in our trash cans proves otherwise.
*Many of us require our produce be pristine, or we trash it. But which is really spoiled? The produce, or the person who can't be bothered to cut off a bad spot?
Like Cutsi in my last post, The Mountains of Romania, Aunt Ethel, too, is a generous giver with a big heart. Indeed, with a good dose of thrift, even those of modest means can aspire to philanthropy.
So, next time you cull the old salad dressings languishing in your refrigerator door, drink--to Aunt Ethel!
Up next: We honeymoon at the in-laws', and I meet an incredible woman: The Mountains of RomaniaTweet