Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A new beginning

After months of uncertainty, the winds finally turned in my favor!  For the academic year 2011-2012 I’ll be a professional-in-residence in Greek and Roman art history.  The position gives me stability for a year, and allows me to work on research and publications.  The only drawback is that I’ll still be in hot and humid Louisiana.  I try to focus on the good points, such as the terrific rhythm and blues radio station broadcast from Baton Rouge High School.  I’d also rave about the food, but the seafood is still a little suspect after the BP oil disaster last year.

Teaching just MWF leaves my TTh open for research and errands that I never seem to have time for.  I’ve been back two years and am just getting around to getting my brake tag.  But first I had to take my car in to get the taillight replaced and some windshield chips repaired.  Ragusa’s is an awesome place to go for car maintenance - unfortunately everyone in town knows that, so when I stopped by at 7:45 this morning, they already were scheduling for the afternoon.  Always flexible and ready for anything, I came prepared to work on class material and do a little shopping.   I’ve been craving homemade Austrian soup and needed to pick up some soup bones at Calandro’s.  Calandro’s is an institution, celebrating its 70th year.  They carry a few Austrian wines, Austrian pumpkin seed oil and a domestic Slivowitz that isn’t half bad. 
Is it soup yet?
Calandro’s is less than a mile from Ragusa’s, so I dropped my car off and set out with my cooler ... on foot.  The folks at Ragusa’s thought I was crazy.  So did the cop at Calandro’s.  Seriously it’s the same distance from the center of Wörschach to the train station!  I’ve driven that stretch of Government a thousand times, and I saw things on foot that I’ve never seen before:  a charming old boarded up grocery, a law office with Christmas decorations still hung, antique shops and second hand stores I never knew existed. And yet along this extremely busy four-lane road at rush hour I could still appreciate the cool breeze and the trill of crickets in the grass.

Thanks to Tiger Trails which conveniently stops right in front of Ragusa’s, I made it back home with my purchases, put on some soup, and will work on class prep until they call to come pick up my car. With apologies to Mr. Rogers, it's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!

Update:  9/23/2011
Mr. Roger's Introductions 1967-2000


Drew said...

I'm so excited for you! Plus, that looks the start to a damn good soup. What all is in it?

JKS said...

Ooh, thanks Drew! My photo shows the makings for soup and the things you can get at Calandros. For the soup, I took 1.5 lbs of beef + bones, a large carrot, half an onion, 3 celery tops, 6 cups of water, salt and pepper, brought it all to a boil and let it simmer covered for 90 minutes. The beef that was boiled I'll serve eventually with the pumpkinseed oil, vinegar, onions and cornichons as an "Austrian beef salad". Of course, I'll chase it with a shot of that Slivowitz (blue plum brandy)!