We rarely eat out -- and even more rarely do we eat at restaurants of the sort Bourdain is describing-- but I found myself fascinated by his account of the interplay between the various members of a restaurant's staff. The drama! The choreography! The planning! The testosterone! The bitchiness!
I'm a pretty good cook -- resourceful, innovative, organized -- but I wouldn't last five minutes in the world Bourdain describes. I sure enjoyed peeking into it though.
And I will never order fish on Sunday or Monday.
~~~About as far away from Bourdain's kitchens as one can get is These is my Words by Nancy E. Turner.
Based on Turner's family memoirs, this story is told in the form of the diary of Sarah Prine, 1881- 1901. Traveling with her family on a wagon train into the Arizona Territories, Sarah encounters almost every kind of danger the frontier has to offer. Her indomitable spirit carries her through an unsettled childhood, an unhappy marriage, motherhood, widowhood and more.
Sarah's voice is real and compelling -- and in spite of all the perils and hazards of her life, there's a wonderful humor in this book. I was reminded of Lee Smith's Fair and Tender Ladies -- and that, is high praise.