MAILING : P.O. Box 8, Los Olivos, CA 93441
Our beloved Head Chef
A day at Midland has its own special rhythm. For me, a faint drum beats early. It is dark as I head off to Midland to prepare breakfast. I love this quiet time when I am the only person stirring in the pre-dawn. I feel butterflies inside as I turn on to Figueroa Mountain Road. Ten years making this trip and the butterflies are still my companions. What will the day bring? Who will need an extra serving of TLC today?
I know where to glance to catch sight of rabbits nibbling on the roadside, when to slow down for the wild turkeys where the road curves. Suddenly, here I am, crossing the bridge into school. I slip into the kitchen on autopilot turning on lights, coffeemaker and ovens, heating water for rice and oatmeal. Preparing breakfast before the dining room fills takes all my focus.
Soon I am joined by the Graveyard crew and morning Faculty of the Day (FOD). The students are scarcely awake, zombie-like as they set out cereal, bagels and yoghurt; the FOD establishes a table base for morning check-in.
Pleasure infuses me as students appear. I know “my kids” will begin their day with a healthy breakfast. My radar pings when a student sits quietly with only a cup of tea. I’ll be watching for this student at lunch to see if they need some extra care.
“Do what you love most and your job will not seem like work,” we tell our children. My job is my good fortune. My gratitude is reflected back to me as I observe people’s pleasure eating the meals I cook. My favorite farm-to-table recipes that I share here have only one ingredient for which there is no substitute. Add a pinch of love to each one.
Continue exploring the Midland experience