Zen Spot #21 -- Mindfulness, meditation, love and chocolate January 23, 2018 12:09
Love and chocolate
From 1940, until her death in 1990, my paternal grandmother used to make chocolate candies for Christmas. Dozens and dozens.
In the house where my father lived as a child, she would sit in a very practical dining room, with a large early twentieth-century wood clock on the eastern wall, and roll caramel, coconut, cashews, walnuts and cream in warm chocolate.
Two weeks before
The chocolate — the raw chocolate — came from a store on Cherry Street in Center City. I was taken there once when I was about nine years old. Volunteering, chocolate was promised. It couldn’t hurt that the street was named for my favorite fruit.
In retrospect, in my mind's eye, I see the trip in the colors associated with an older film that has aged in an expected way. My father drove our station wagon with his father in the passenger seat. My uncle Jimmy sat next to me in the back.
I don’t remember going into the store. Instead, I remember the exterior. Google the Genco Pura Olive Oil Company to view a similar exterior. Its name and precise location has been lost to history, as have all those who took me to Center City.
As an adult, many years later, I was walking through a rarely visited part of Center City when I found an oddly familiar block of Cherry Street that felt more familiar than any of the other 50 plus blocks that run west. Almost every address on the street had a two or three step front stoop and, with the exception of the dead of winter, on sunny days, the north side is always warm for a portion of the day.
I chose the south side. Leaning against a four-foot brick wall, in its shadow, I sat on the sidewalk, closed my eyes, and spent a few minutes breathing slowly, thinking of chocolate, family and time.
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