Saturday, July 18, 2009

Pleasure and Business

OK, all these years I never noticed the mustard sauce in my fridge said "Swedish Style" (Photo courtesy
I had dinner with my favorite professor, also my thesis adviser, last night at Larrupin Cafe in Trinidad.

It was my first time to try that place, although I've been eating their famous Larrupin Sauce on my bagels and anything else I can think of for years. It's a delicious mustard dill sauce. I had no idea it was Swedish.

I noticed everything barbecued or smoked on the menu was "mesquite grilled," an indicator of a Texas connection. Besides "larrupin" means delicious in old-fashioned Southern vernacular.

When our little appetizer board came out, that's when I became aware of the Swedish connection as well. Besides the ubiquitous sauce in its natural habitat, there was a little smoked salmon and cucumber, little rounds of dark rye bread, soft cheese, and pieces of apple.
Photo courtesy of Laurie H. at
And also a little chicken liver pate, a Texas thing, I think, although I am starting to become confused about which things in my own family history are Southern things and which are Swedish things. Our family dips everything in everything else, celebrates Christmas on Christmas eve, sleeps at night with pillows in our arms; I am no longer aware of where our idiosyncrasies come from. At any rate, chicken liver pate is something I am already familiar with.

So like me, Larrupin Cafe has a healthy mix of elements of Sweden and the American South. Sure enough, when I asked our waiter about this, he said the original owners were a Swedish man and a Texas woman.

So besides having a good dinner and great fun catching up on the details of my friend's life, I also got a reminder that many deadlines are coming over the next few months. My schedule is going to be hectic as soon as I return from Sweden (all the more reason to enjoy myself like crazy while I'm there).

My adviser warned me not to take on too much. Over the years I have learned to trust her judgment absolutely (there are very few people I can say that about).

She told me that teaching English 100, taking one graduate level class, writing a thesis, working at the newspaper and raising a teenager are plenty; do not also teach a class through the international program, no matter how much I like it, no matter that I was going to teach grammar, no matter that the students wish it. She is right, of course.

So anyway, now I have a bit of a roadmap of my next five months.


steviewren said...

It is always good to get advice from those who have been there and done that.

I'm looking forward to your trip. I plan to travel vicariously through you!

Starlene said...

Sounds like you have a full plate...

; )

Now I'm longing for exotic foods. The closest I'm getting around here is Jarlsberg from the fridge.

Indie said...

Starlene, haha! I asked my friends, "Is there Mexican food in Sweden?" thinking if I do move there, I'm not sure I can live without Mexican food (good news is, I can cook it). They said, "Yes!" Now I am totally curious about the Swedish interpretation of Mexican food...

Steviewren, it is waaaaay more fun to write blog posts when I know there is someone reading and enjoying them. Thank you for making me feel encouraged to document the adventure. :)

Starlene said...'ll have to be sure and let me know about that. I'm curious. After living so close to Texas for so long, the Mexican food here in Ohio is nearly inedible to me. Mexican cooking skills will indeed serve you well! ; )

Anonymous said...

Hi K! What ever happened to your countdown? Where do we stand? And will I read anything from you during your stay in Sweden??? Not to disappoint you... liver pate is German based I'm sure. It's totally common here. Called liverwurst though. ;-P Anyway, I trust you're doing ok!? Hugs, R.

Indie said...

R, I thought I might be getting tedious with my countdown!! It is 6 days til I leave home, 8 days til I fly, 9 days til I get to Sweden. :)

Yes, I intend to blog while I am away. I'll try not to be boring! I'm glad you will be reading, my friend.

Chicken liver pate is the BEST. I LOVE the Germans for that (and for producing you!). I am doing fine and I hope you are too.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Indie.