This isn't a personal journal (in the traditional sense, at least), so I won't go into all my ranting about the current practices of splitting up tables in the restaurant :) However! Today, I was cutting lemons (lots and lots of lemons), and I realized something very important.
Cutting lemons is the most therapeutic activity in the world.
Imagine this. You're leaning against the counter, it's around 11 am, there are no customers yet and the few people at work are still unstressed and happy. But while they're scurrying around, making coffee, setting tables, filling up the parm graters, you are just leaning against the counter, looking at about fifty luxuriously yellow lemons, and wondering how on earth you will finish cutting them all into eight pieces each to garnish water and lemon iced teas in fifteen minutes. So, you start. What other way is there to finish in time?
There's an exquisite line here between mindless activity and sharp attention: the blade of the knife you use is very, very sharp, yet the motions required are simple and repetitive. The lemons are wet and fresh and slippery and your hands are smothered in the liquid, and the scent of lemons makes the entire area smell clean, even if that may not actually be the case. You stand there, and lean against the counter, and very vaguely focus upon your task, and for fifteen minutes it's as if the whole world blurs behind you and it's just you, and the lemons, and the knife. Not even you, actually, only your hands, slick and sliding and small. There is no thought, no reason or pain. There is only a splash of pleasure on your psyche every time the knife slips through the peel and more lemon juice squirts into your fingernails and down your arms.
Honestly, despite the fact that I had only three tables and was there only three hours, it was a very excellent shift. Lemons soothe me. By the end of it I was seriously craving a slice to suck on for myself, but unfortunately the managers were hovering around us like hawks. Or hummingbirds, because I don't think hawks hover.
Mm... I'm too exhausted from last night to write a chapter today. That's forgivable, right? Right?