Thursday, September 11, 2014


This beautiful salad I ate for lunch today was only reminiscent of the nicoise salads I enjoyed in days of yore. Here, grilled vegetables from last night's dinner stand in for the roasted potatoes found in a traditional nicoise salad. The piquant capers effectively transported my tastebuds to the rooftop restaurant in Athens, Greece, where I first learned to love this culinary genre. This was a delicious, empty-starch-free lunch.

My first impulse was to title this post "Nicoisish" but then the second syllable unlocked a random and almost forgotten memory of having studied an element of Neoclassical Decorative Arts called "Chinoiserie". My mind is all over the place today, but it's rather exciting. I am so surprised at what is coming forth. Most of these emerging memories had been faded, forgotten and potentially lost. Could it be that the Wahls' Protocol is beginning to work? I love thinking, and remembering. I've had a lovely life thus far and it'd be a shame not to know about it.

Along with a few of my fellow Art History Major compadres at my alma mater, William and Mary, I was fortunate enough to take a wonderful Decorative Arts class within the Dewitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum in Williamsburg, Virginia, across the street from the College and historic Duke of Gloucester Street. "Chinoiserie" was one representation of European Neoclassical Decorative Arts toward the end of the 18th century. It is simply the Eastern influence in European designs in furniture, textiles and other decorative items created during that time. It was one of my favorite classes.  It was amazing to be able to study the actual items instead of slides in a sleepy, dark auditorium. How I'd love to do it all again -- even the dark auditorium part!

Fun fact: The historic building which houses the Dewitt Wallace Museum was formerly a sanitarium (modern euphemism for what used to be called an "insane asylum"). A former neighbor of my mother's was in residence there in her later years. The neighbor used to babysit my mom and her younger sister, and had always made mom uneasy. Currently there is a history museum to commemorate the building's former incarnation on the upper level of the building. True story.

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