I can hear them loud and clear, even courteous whispers between the longest residents.The chatter goes on most of the day. In the mid-afternoon tired of hearing themselves, they all usually rest and the pantry quiets.
The newly arrived cans of soup have taken over, certainly in size and quantity and they’re not silent. They wake up daily, stand to attention and keep formidable formation. They are strong, tall, rounded metal vessels filled with the promise of provisions.
I imagine the 3 Cheese Tortellini from Progresso is the best. I love pasta. Amongst the platoon of soup characters there are 2 foreign soldiers, 2 cans of Lentil and Chickpea Soup from Germany, available at Aldi’s. For sure this provision will go into the Little Emmie blender for transformation into a puree that could be complimented with chicken sausage bites.
There are a few personalities in the pantry that are always trying to start a party. They claim they have the most fun and are keeping all focused on having a good time. From what I hear, they’re even trying to start a band.
The leaders of fun group are the Trader Joe’s Corn & Chile Tomato-less Salsa and the Crystal Light Lemon Iced Tea. Certainly those two are the party instigators, they’re always together. It’s an international bunch for sure. They’re joined many times in their carnival pursuits by the Panama D’Elidas Picante Chombo Habanero Pepper sauce and the sophisticated Italian Priano Rosso Pesto.
The pantry regulars, they prefer to be called the Pantry Scouts, they also are in formation, always standing at attention, the difference between them and the soup cans is grace and elegance.
They are the go-to condiments for most cooking: onion powder, turmeric, cumin, cinnamon and always vanilla. They are protected by their best friends, the tall and thin Iberia Premium 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil and the robust Highland Sugarworks Pure New England Maple Syrup. These pantry regulars have been together from the start dating back to October of 2016.
Always stocked, replenished and forever courteous.
There are a few pantry personalities that are reflective and considerate. The Organic Oats & Oatmeal and the Cream of Wheat Instant Hot Cereal, they are always available to comfort any and all. They are the ones that read poetry and listen to old time classics, they often request the Yacht Rock channel on Amazon Music provided by Alexa.
They are the ones that pay attention to all that is going on and figured out that Alexa is not a new roommate that only takes verbal commands and sometimes responds with sassy comments. Of these two, the Cream of Wheat has been with me since childhood. This pantry companion is part of wonderful, cherished childhood memories, Grandma Chichi made cream of wheat and her recipe was never instant. The love of that hot warm cereal with a hint of cinnamon, vanilla and lemon is a memory that takes me back immediate to the Linda Vista Finca in Arraijan in Panama. I close my eyes and taste the love.
The are two pantry items that will someday be shared with another family. They have broken hearts and until they mend, they will stay with all their other pantry friends. Their role in the pantry was always to be ready for any issues with Morgan and Maddie’s tummies if they ever got upset. They are the tried and true Baker’s Corner Organic Pumpkin 100% Pure and the 10 Minute Success Boil-in-Bag White Rice. Yes, there’s always an emotional one in the crowd. And these two have always stuck together. Wherever one goes, they go together. They’ve been wonderful companions during the past 15 years. It will take time before they agree to move in with another family with canine companions. I keep an eye out for these two.
The king of the pantry as you might expect is JIF, specifically Natural JIF Creamy Peanut Butter. This mighty pantry companion has been and will always be king. In these times of the global community sharing the horrific Covid-19 Pandemic, the king is in full reigning mode, taking charge, assuring all the other pantry mates EVERYTHING WILL BE OK.
Due to a BOGO sale just in time at Publix a few weeks ago, the JIF King has an identical twin brother. They get along. I can’t tell them apart.
The best attribute of the KINGS JIF is that they get along with everyone. Their friendship spans all: fancy crackers, the mighty saltines, warm tortillas, any type of bread toasted crunchy, almost green bananas, crisp apple slices and most delicious, their friendship with organic dates. KINGS JIF, they know all their pantry mates well and also those that hang out in the refrigerator. I never question their reign and their self-appointment in the pantry kingdom.
There are many other personalities in the pantry, they are mostly quiet and follow along with the more boisterous ones detailed in this post. The lower most shelf is the neighborhood for the mechanical types, machines that make coffee, blend ingredients and make shakes. The supplies consider themselves that most valuable assets, I think they call themselves the MVPMs, Most Valuable Pantry Mates.
In this unprecedented historic time in the world, I’m grateful for all the items in the pantry.
More important, I’m especially grateful for my health, I’m grateful that I live close to Ana, Parker & Tobias. I’m grateful for all in my family. I’m grateful for my friends.
I’m grateful that I can communicate readily with family and friends all over the world.
I’m grateful for all who’ve reached out and continue to do so.
I’m grateful for all in the world on the frontlines of healthcare. I cannot begin to imagine the expectation of courage and valor that each healthcare worker in the world is feeling these days.
I’m grateful to all who are present in daily jobs and roles that sustain all the citizens of the world.
I’m grateful for Governor Cuomo of New York for setting the example of leadership.
I’m grateful for the blue skies in Florida today.
I’m eternally grateful for hope and prayer.