On Saturday night I ventured out for a ‘normal’ kind of party, with a ‘normal’ range of people, to celebrate a friend’s 40th birthday. This party was being held in rather salubrious joint called The Milkthistle in Bristol, and we were to be served our beverages from a small cocktail bar - drinks starting at £6 for a glass of house wine (*&^%(£$ how much?!)
After being so internalised, for so long I’d almost turned myself inside out, I have begun to long for the more ‘normal’ activities and events that I used to enjoy - sharing a bottle of wine with a friend, dining out, talking about something other than how the mind works. So I was looking forward to this night out, the chance to reconnect with that other lifestyle I abandoned some time ago and start integrating myself back into society again.
I have often been challenged by the more superficial conversation about hair and make-up, and other things that girls are supposed to be interested in, but when it came to talking about food (which I love) I at least thought I could show interest, listen intently and maybe even offer something in return.
The conversation moved into the realm of cheese, specifically a type of cheese beginning with E that was apparently really delicious and was now available from Sainsbury’s. The description of dipping a warm baguette into a pile of this special E cheese (served at room temperature) and enjoying that with a glass of red wine certainly got me interested and I thought, yeah… I may well look out that cheese the next time I find myself in Sainsbury’s.
“What was it called again?” I said. “Epicurean?”
I wasn’t really sure what that word was at the time, since I’d had a couple of glasses of sparkly wine, but it was just the nearest slightly familiar E word that came to mind.
It wasn’t until a couple of days later that I realised what I’d plucked from the air was not a type of cheese, or indeed any kind of food for that matter. Oh no, far from it… Epicurean is a ‘system of philosophy based on the teachings of Epicurus’!
Clearly I have a little way to go in terms of my integration back into normal society, before I can hold a conversation about what’s happening out here and what interests people anyway. God knows how it’s all going to pan out - it’s certainly been a little gnarly thus far - but I’m damn sure I’ve made the right move by returning.
PS. I think the cheese is called Epoisses. I’m pretty sure it’s not Epicurean. Although if there was an Epicurean cheese available I’d definitely like to sample some..