Sitting in my office in downtown Vancouver, an Excel sheet open in front of me, I daydream: “A fluffy sponge cake. Three layers. Rosewater buttercream. Soak the cake in lemon syrup. Fresh rose petals to decorate. A sprinkle of gold powder on top of the cake to finish.”
For a few minutes, I escape the reality of my job as a researcher and enter a baking fantasy, one of my secret internal worlds. That world, that compartment of my personality, is as much part of me as my name, my hair colour, or the sound of my voice. «Cogito ergo sum», wrote Descartes, “I think, therefore I am.” I “bake, therefore I am.” Baking is synonymous with my name and my name is synonymous with baking. We are one.
Crying in a bathroom stall. Who hasn’t done it? I have, so many times. In the darkest days, when I wished I was anywhere but sitting on my desk at work. Like the time I felt so sick from the stress I thought I was going to die. Like the days when getting out of bed took all my strength and will power, but I still made it to work, all dressed for success. Or the day when I got to the office, set the coffee pot, and felt the most profound, infinite hopelessness, that tears ran down my face as the coffeemaker purred and puffed quietly in the empty lunch room.