It was the first time, and it wouldn’t be the last. I want another brush with her. And another. She is the salt of the Earth, the effervescence of my life. She is the feeling of coming home, her scent is the aroma of comfort food to the starving.
For as long as I can remember, she has been the calamine to my wounds. I take refuge in her when life trips me and kicks me in the gut. She always listens, intently, without an urgency to respond. She doesn’t need words to soothe.
Have you ever found the perfect leaf in fall? Sunkissed to perfection, devoid of moisture and coiled in a blanket of its own body? The joy I find in her company is akin to stepping on that perfectly crunchy leaf. I would go out of my way to find her, just like I would for that perfect yellowing fall leaf.
But she’s a delicate one, crafted with care by the maker. I fear my love will crush her. Or me. We can’t live with each other or without. The quandary is unbearable. I fear someone else will take her away from me. I fear it will be someone dense, who cannot look beyond her exterior. Someone who doesn’t appreciate her earthy, humble beginnings.
Truth is, no one can understand her like I do. I have touched her soul. Today she has a new look. She takes a deep sigh when I open her new red and white packaging. She reveals herself to me, chip after potato chip. For the first time, she is clothed in Sriracha, as if just for me.
I crunch away with guilty pleasure, while she waits for me to reach inside again for another chip, salted, seasoned and fried to perfection.