I haven’t bought peanut butter in a long time. I was reminded of such recently when my sister Jane stayed over for a night, and couldn’t find any peanut butter (or anything else really) to put on her English muffin next morning. My cupboards are spare. When you live alone and aren’t feeding kids anymore, you buy what you need. You don’t buy things in case someone might want them. You buy the things that will be put together to create your meals and that’s that.
It’s not that I was avoiding peanut butter or anything. For most of my adult life, it was the warm melty goodness on a Sunday morning’s piece of toast that went back to bed with me and a cup of coffee and CBC radio and whatever book or newspaper or letter was getting my attention that particular weekend.
The main reason I stopped buying peanut butter was because I got rid of my car. Since I don’t drive anymore, there have been changes to the way I do lots of things, like stopping at the grocery store. These days I don’t buy to fill the pantry – I buy what I can carry home. And for the past six months or so, peanut butter hasn’t had a place in the grocery bags I am forever schlepping around. I guess peanut butter hasn’t been as “schlep-worthy” as other stuff. It might have been on the grocery list – in fact I’d say it WAS on the list a number of times, but it got superseded by the can of tomatoes or bottle of olive oil which I realised I needed at the last minute, and which I needed more than peanut butter. When you’re walking home from the grocery store, distributing weight in the bags becomes a priority, and in my little walking home world, it was peanut butter that took the hit.
So, as it happened yesterday, peanut butter finds its way into one of the grocery bags, and back to my cupboard for the first time in many months. And tonight after doing the dishes, I open the jar and peel back the sealed foil and stick a spoon in and have a little hunk of the stuff. And I tell you, it is a little spoonful of happy, glorious salty peanuty heaven. There is no piece of Sunday toast that will ever taste as good as that first little spoonful after many months of not schlepping it home because there were other things I “needed” more.
(Even so… me and peanut butter have a date this Sunday morning with my bathrobe and a cup of coffee and CBC Radio and a good book and a piece of toast.)
Copyright © Jennifer Morrison 2009