Food Not Just Fuel

Food Not Just Fuel

North Park Produce was always busy, feeding the diverse ethnic communities of San Diego County. It was so popular in fact, that they opened another larger store in Poway. Its quite different from an average market, as there is an indescribable feeling of bounteousness that is lacking somehow in the American counterpart. The first thing you notice is the scent of exotic spices, then its the massive collection of different varieties of feta cheese in the deli, where you can buy by the pound. In the refrigerated section were my favorites, delicious, twisted fresh cheese, studded with black cumin seeds, excellent, Turkish garlic sausages, and packages of thin, rich tasting, whole wheat pastry. I used to toast it with cheese until it resembled Gozleme. The next thing to inspire awe was the produce section, overflowing with seasonal fruits and vegetables. There were the most exquisite blood oranges I had ever tasted, bright bunches of flat leaved parsley, and sweetly fragrant, yet unusual looking melons. One side of the store housed kitchenware, such as Turkish coffeepots, teapots, sugar bowls, tea sets, and wooden spoons etc. The other side, the meat section, carried high quality lamb, beef, poultry, and roasted sheep heads, this by far being one of the most shocking things I had ever seen. The middle of the store housed multiple types of Turkish tea, sugar cubes, various brands of rose and orange blossom water, pomegranate molasses, and middle eastern spice blends, among many other things. A nostalgic paradise for people living away from their country of origin. For me, at the time, browsing those aisles was taking a trip to a somewhere very different from my own culture, and I savored everything. I live in Turkey now, so most of these things I see regularly, yet the aura they represent never ceases to excite me.

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Coffee. Beer. Climbing Tall Things.

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