Monday, July 16, 2007

The Cost of Being Free

I must admit, I am a fan of fancy breads. There's nothing quite like tearing my teeth through through the rind of a sourdough bread-bowl at Panera after I've decimated its squishy broccoli and cheese innards. There's just something satisfyingly primal about it while at the same time keeping a sense of class. Is is, after all, not some peasant's bread, thrown together with leftover wheat kernels and sawdust and tossed into a fire to be blackened to barely nourishing perfection. It is a huge, flavorful, sourdough roll, lovingly aged and baked at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes until golden brown, then glazed with egg-white until it glistens in the artificial light of the kitchen.

Whenever I get the chance to partake in such masterful baker-craft, I indulge. So, when I saw a sign hanging near the "Help Wanted" cork-board that said, and I quote, "Free Panera Bread: Monday 2-3, Norton 120" the glands in my mouth began salivating of their own accord.

Rachel and I have now lived in Louisville for two Mondays, both of which we have forgotten the fact of this occasion. We don't have a day-planner to mark such things on. So, it was purely by coincidence, when checking our mail, that we happened to see a young couple pushing a stroller toting clear plastic bag that was absolutely full of bagels.

This, of course, jogged my memory.

It was 2:30.

We still had time.

So, we made our way down to Norton hall, asked for directions once, and came upon the smell before we walked into the room. There were no less than six boxes full of different kinds of bread. Loaves, rolls, baguettes, sweet breads, sour breads, muffins, bagels. I put on some gloves and went to work.

This is our bounty.

Sitting, right up there on the tippy top, is what will soon become a sourdough bread bowl. Here's the rundown: one loaf, one roll, one bread bowl, two sections of baguette, what may be a sandwich bagel, and half a piece of delicious looking, red onion topped flat-bread.

Life is sweet.

A better view of our bounty.

Sliced up and ready for meat and cheese! Most of the bread was bagged up and put in the freezer, while about a quarter of the loaf was left out for sandwiching purposes.

God bless a land who pities poor, jobless seminary students.

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