Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Fotos from Foodie Heaven and a few comments on Creativity

Last night we were served a little bit of heaven.
The main course.
The appetizers.
Last night we entertained Glenn and Emily Swanson, owners of the Oldenburg House in Carlton. The 3-course meal was designed and executed by our son, Chef Micah, a cook at the New Scenic Cafe up the North Shore. The photos here are totally inadequate to convey the sumptuousness of the meal, which began with goose confit appetizer, a to-die-for gazpacho and a main course of goose breast. Most of the embellishments, as well as the goose, were grown here on our property. The shiitake mushrooms and a few of the other ingredients were foraged by our chef.

Our goose was cooked.
A better journalist would have more details here but I wasn't taking the notes I should have been. Instead, Glenn and I were talking about music and creativity. Glenn's a premiere jazz drummer whose career includes playing with many of the greats. When I put an Ahmad Jamal CD on for background music and asked if he'd ever gotten a chance to hear Ahmad Jamal, he said, "I played with Ahmad Jamal."

At one point we talked about the way a group of musicians gets into a groove and they're playing off one another until "it reaches a level of pure joy, you're inside a fire of joy."

We compared various creative forms and how the great ideas come from a single kernel. You download it and unpack it, he said, "exploring all these varying ideas from one seed that is infinitely blossoming." Many people who live in that moment fail to take the next step. "The takeaway is the seed, so I can revisit it, reproduce it and have it be available to other musicians. If you just hang on to the flower you can lose where it came from."

Creativity is an expression of joy that is best when shared. We're grateful for our son Micah, who has shared so many wondrous culinary experiences with us.

Gazpacho, with embellishments.
Glenn Swanson, Susie, Emily Swanson and Micah. It was good.
If you are a writer or artist in need of a getaway, check in to Oldenburg House. Their motto is "Find Your Nature." One of the guests who stayed with them recently wrote this in their guest book: "We came as guests and left as family." It doesn't get much better than that.

Hint: if you are coming to the Northland this fall for the changing of the seasons (note the autumn colors in our dining room) you will not find a better place to stay than Oldenburg House, adjacent Jay Cooke State Park on the edge of Paradise. Few places offer more direct access to our spectacular Northland.


Meantime, creativity goes on all around you. Engage it.

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