What started as a simple* project to preserve memories for my cousin, and to keep my work, has turned into so many questions, and a few regrets.
The book I chose to begin working from and transcribing at first looked like a messy compilation of jottings and scribbles and recipes my great grandma collected from friends and acquaintances. As I thumb through it, it looks more like a mother-daughter collaboration between her and my grandma. Grams has imposed some organizational structure on it — her lines are sharp and crisp and clear, written in her elegant, sloping script –multiple cookie recipes per page, and more cookies on the facing page, and more cookies after that. Great grandma fills in the gaps with stroganoffs and dumplings and shortcakes.
I doubt they would’ve undertaken it, but for a fleeting moment I thought maybe they toyed with the idea of putting together their own cookbook. Maybe they shared and swapped the book over the course of years.
Why wouldn’t she have ever told me about it? Shown it to me? Talked about it?
Maybe it was a vestige of a life she left far, far behind. One it was too much to go back to.
I have so many questions.