Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Hey Baby, You're a Free Girl Now

Summer Shrimp Delight
My friend Lisa sent me this Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing idea and I finally made it, put it on my taco's and as a salad dressing as well as a nacho sauce.  It's very versatile and just like she advertised, it's addictive!  This time I created this wildly refreshing and spicy shrimp over polenta with greens and corn.  I carry some pride on this one.  Also it's the first dish post-COVID that I got excited about making.  I was filled with if not energy, at least more will then before.  COVID zapped me clean of my vigor along with muscle strength and breath more long term than I care to admit.  But it's coming back slowly.  It's hard but I'm accepting what is, as they say.

And I can't allow myself to get depressed because I no longer believe in depression.  It's only a thought in my mind.  I tell ya, they need to teach this stuff in grade school, could have saved me years of pre-teen ulcers.  It's the single best thing I learned probably ever, that nothing unreal exists.  Mind-blowing, life changing, earth shattering!  And it's the greatest news that should be shouted from rooftops.  The mind really loves chaos and works very hard to keep us in these troubled states and believing all sorts of idiotic concepts.  The ego isn't real either.  In fact, her only power is when we allow her to control our thoughts.  Many spiritual teachers explain these ideologies in different ways, and I've searched for years for answers, something just finally clicked.  To be fair I was raised Catholic and many of these teachings were there hidden inside these beautiful, poetic, but way too complicated stories for a child to grasp.   But the most important basic truth, that we are not our egos or minds, but instead a unified consciousness, that one was lost on me until my late 20s, when my ego said, 'Uh, yeah yeah, we'll get back to that.  Hey, come check this out!'  and not until now did I ever really fully come back to it.    
Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing
I don't have to fight my demons anymore!  I just have to breathe and stay in the present.   Those looming dark clouds, potential calamities, cannot bring me suffering when I stay in the moment and don't allow my mind to come in and start running things.  And in one of those free moments, I had the great opportunity to make magic out of a bag of frozen shrimp.   I put a little extra jalapeno in the creamy sauce, so the Cotija cheese and green onion cut some of the heat and gave it such brightness. The wilted spinach was that just-right bite of bitter, the sweet corn, the earthy Polenta and then those spicy shrimp!  What a delight!

Thich Nhat Hanh - Vietnamese Buddhist Monk

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