It’s hard to imagine such old beauty, both in the natural sense and in the man-made form. It was a cold winter afternoon in February, when my daughter, my dog and myself decided to grip winter by the hands and see exactly what she had to offer. The walk began after we took our bus up to the top town, behind us (about a 5 minute ride) and we set off, beginning at the oldest church I have ever seen, the Wallfahrtskirche. This church was originally built in the year 1000, and was renovated in 1500, then renovated once again in the mid 1950’s. That alone is a stunner to me! This church has an old story attached to it, that’s said to have below the floor boards in the church, remains from the old town-ship dating back to the middle ages! This church was a perfect back drop for our black and white day. Along our 2 hour walk home, nature dealt us a number of surprises. From the natural spring water trickling from the watering hole, to the natural insect house sitting next to the holy saint! A welcoming forest begging for visitors, and a babbling brook making her descend down from the higher alps, this day was not only inspiring our natural senses, but our culinary senses too. For one reason or another, we began talking, thinking and dreaming of a beautiful plate of Alpen Macaroni waiting for us when we got home. It was cold outside, and depending on where we were, there might have been a cold breeze blowing through us. It was funny to the both of us how we found our walk in nature to inspire our culinary cravings. It was at that moment where I realized that nature does in fact inspire cuisine or at the very least, creativity. In previous centuries, most of our time was spent walking or being out doors-heck, Charles Dickens was a walker, and was said to easily walk 20 miles a day (but most often he’d walk at night). Henry David Thoreau was said to walk and walk and walk. The sculpture Constantin Brancusi was said to have walked from his work place in Roma to his home town in Paris regularly. I see here, I’m not alone with my feelings of nature and giving off it’s inspirations! The fresh air blows a sort of desire to reward yourself for a ‘job well done’. For some reason, over the past century alone, the “purposeless walk” as it’s been noted has been on the decline, and it’s been replaced with automobiles and fast-food. Seemingly, this transition is leaving us humans empty and unsatisfied in the end. I think I’ve come up with a moral to this write. Don’t settle for the quick fix-seek life and see the endless possibilities both in nature and in food. You create what you wish to live-maybe they didn’t realize it back then, in the middle ages, or even 80 years ago, but life was better in so many ways. Sadly, this full throttle attempt of distracting us natives, is working, and food and nature are absorbing the blows. Food is a healer, an inspirer, a leader in the type of life we want to live.
At the end of our 2 hour journey through nature’s winter lands, we arrived home. No, we didn’t arrive to a warm meal of Alpen Macaroni, but instead we were welcomed by a fine display of love. A warmly set table, along with a wonderful plate of Pasta Bolognese! My 16 year old daughter thought we could use a nice warm welcome. I’m glad we think alike! It was a site worth coming home to!