The Pantry of Pleasures

My rapped attention would be focused on the under-stairs pantry, which guarded troves of fresh baking. On any visit, its treasures might offer up chocolate muffins, gumdrop cake dolloped with creamy icing, or extra syrupy cinnamon buns. You could count on a fresh loaf of homemade bread. 

The aroma of spices, yeast and sugar would practically overcome my senses as I’d count down the minutes until teatime. Delicacies would soon be served on green Depression-era plates (now in full vogue, thanks to Martha Stewart).” … An excerpt from, “ A Place at My Table”.

This photo would have been taken about the time I started visiting Emma.  Thousands of visits were to follow, but this is exactly how I will always remember her.

Upon hearing of the story concerning Emma’s polio, someone referred to her as “handicapped”.  I was taken aback, not once had I’d thought of her that way!  Strong-willed, an overcomer through any challenge, I started to correct, “Oh, Emma wasn’t handicapped… she just couldn’t walk!” It struck me, “not being able to walk” might have been considered a huge “drawback”, but only to those who didn’t know Her!

My designated chair at the table faced the gateway to those treasures. A thin film of cotton had been sewn into a gathered curtain.  No doubt there were times when the contents lying beyond may have been the real reason for my “drop-ins”.  

With each drop of tea, love multiplied. That’s what happens when you share your table.  Nowadays, we may not possess troves of fresh sweets, but we have bakeries and coffee shops. Connections are made over food and drinks. Care reaches out. Relationships are established, and lives like mine are changed.

Emma possessed very few “giftings”, as most would judge a person like her.  With a grade four education, and little access to the world outside her home, Emma shared what little she had. God multiplied her efforts, accomplishing the miraculous.

When this woman and child came together, a commonality was created over bread and biscuits. 

Emma at her pantry, she is speaking to me even now. “Susan, it’s not about perfection, but dedication.

When you share your table, you share your soul.  

For more stories, go the our store and purchase “A Place at My Table”.

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