The little birds of fortuity
"Our day-to-day life is bombarded with fortuities or, to be more precise, with the accidental meetings of people and events we call coincidence.," Milan Kundera.
Though I didn't mean all the recent recording to be about kitchen alchemy, the little birds of fortuity had plans for me, providing me with 10 lbs of organic, unsalted butter and thus the raw materials for making ghee and opportunity to delve deep into this most holy Hindu substance in my Ayurvedic practitioner studies.
Milan's Kundera's novel Unbearable Lghtness of Being suggests that life is composed of a series of fortuitous events. "If a love is to be unforgettable, fortuities must immediately start fluttering down to it like birds to Francis of Assisi's shoulders." In the late 1980s/early 1990s, when first I read Kundera and whilst earning a living at an academic library, I carved a 12x18 inch block of the birds of fortuity fluttering around St Francis. It's companion was Teresa and the crow. I destroyed the blocks when leaving the Hawaiian islands (baggage) and know of only one person who might have prints. If you are reading this, and have a print of either, contact me. Please and thankyou.
After what seems like a really long time of simmering, the milk solids, which have sunk to the bottom of the saucepan, turn brown . My ghee is ready. I manage to bathe the kitchen in oily ghee during the straining process, in spite of a semblance of pouring spout on my Indian stainless steel saucepan. Oh well.
Some of the best Hindu dieties are regularly bathed in ghee.
I now have a generous supply of ghee as fuel for my body and for making various Ayurvedic medicinal and dosha balancing foods.
Back in March, I prescribed myself ghee to help my bones heal. Five months on from that break, I deduce that those little birds of fortuity who gave me ten pounds of grass fed, organic butter, want me to continue with a ghee heavy diet.
Neither the St Francis nor Teresa blockprint designs appear in this image, but it dates from the era they were carved. 4 Southey Street, circa 1989