The other day, feeling the need for a break from constantly flipping back and forth between talk radio and an alternative rock station that makes me feel like I should be wearing skinny jeans and have more tattoos, I dug out some of my old CDs - yes, CDs – to listen to in the car.
Most of the discs mark an era when I was never without some kind of music in the background, and always something carefully chosen from my collection of everything from folk rock to crooners to….folk rock.
It was a rainy day – not just pouring but darkly overcast – and after I pulled into a drive-thru for a cup of milky tea, I slid a John Mayer disc into the player. The familiarity of it all made me sink back into my seat and smile.
The first track that played was the song that always came on when I was powering over the harbour bridge on my bike, on my way to work at the scuba shop the summer that I met my husband.
That flood of memory triggered another; making me think of this David Gray song, which I cannot listen to without remembering sitting on a bus, flying around hairpin turns on a road cutting through southern Vietnam, staring quietly out at the ocean and tuning the world out with my music.
Or that very first time I heard Ani DiFranco, sprawled out on a blanket under the hot prairie sun at the Winnipeg Folk Festival; the beginning of a musical love affair that is still going strong today.
Next in the CD changer was one of my multitude of Dave Matthews Band albums, the soundtrack to my life after graduating university, breaking up with my then-boyfriend, and wondering what the hell was next.
The whole thing returned to me a deep sense of where I had been, and reflecting on the adventures I’ve had in the last decade gave me a renewed sense of confidence about where I’m going.
(on a somewhat unrelated note, bananas foster: also a quick way to bring some sweetness into your life)
- 2 bananas, quartered lengthwise and sliced in half
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/4 cup dark rum
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- Pinch nutmeg
- Melt the butter in a frying pan over medium heat, and continue heating until it starts to bubble and foam.
- Place the bananas in the butter and fry until golden brown on all sides.
- Add the rum, maple syrup, cinnamon and nutmeg, immediately stirring the mixture to avoid burning. Turn the heat down and simmer until the liquid has reduced and turned lovely and sticky.
- Serve over vanilla ice cream or with a dollop of Greek yogurt.