Perched 50 feet above Stamford
in the rooftop garden of
a new project called The Village,
I couldn’t help but admire the view.
The city sparkled in the sunlight to the East and
Long Island Island Sound glistened like diamonds.
I’d never seen the city quite like this.
It’s funny how different things can look
when you see them from another angle.
Every day for the last 12 years
I’ve lived, breathed and touched produce.
For all its singular beauty and vibrancy,
sometimes after all these years
it can just look like fruits and veggies…
Until someone changes your point of view.
One of my favorite parts of my job
is sharing knowledge about food.
Especially with children.
It’s always inspiring.
When you teach someone about
who grew it, when it was picked,
and what makes it special, you
empower them to make better choices
and support a better food system.
My gaze shifted from the Sea and the City,
to (24) exceptional fifth graders
from Waterside School.
The smell of Basil, Lavender,
Rosemary and Thyme permeated the air.
As Chief Food Curator for The Village,
I’ve been fortunate to be involved in
designing and planting a garden on the roof.
Recently I hosted a lunch and
food education class for the kids as part
of a larger partnership between
Waterside School and The Village to help
enrich the lives of the students.
At first they were a little hesitant, milling
around and kind of glancing at the beds.
I reached over to a small plant and pulled
off a leaf, passing it around for them to smell.
“Who knows what this one is?”
They gathered around, noses at the ready.
“It’s basil!” a chorus replied.
The questions started coming fast and furious.
“Can you eat rosemary?”
“How do herbs grow?”
“What do you do with Lavender?”
I know intimately the scent of Lavender,
but found myself breathing a little deeper.
The feeling that we’ve been there,
done that, is all too common.
That’s part of life.
But what makes our journey so special
are those moments when we get to
see it through someone else’s eyes.
Sometimes we need a reminder…
To stop and smell the Basil.