I know there are all kinds of sexy ideas that could go along with this title, but I don’t mean a single one of them.
I’m talking about actual pork and beef and spices and goodness on your plate kind of sausages.
As a metaphor for the stages of life.
No. I have not been drinking. Stick with me for a minute.
Way back in time, when Paul and I were very young, we were both in graduate school. We lived in a cozy apartment in Highland Park New Jersey. We both had part time jobs along with our full course loads, but we were really poor. I used to go to the grocery store with a small plastic counter to keep track of how much I was spending. I had coupons, I shopped the sales, and I made very careful weekly meal plans. When my counter got to $35 dollars, I was done shopping.
That’s all there was, there weren’t no more.
It was hard, but this was many years ago, so a dollar went further than it does today. Also, our local pub had fabulous happy hours with free appetizers and two for one drinks. We survived!
Anyway, one night I planned to serve pasta with marinara sauce. Paul wanted to have a sausage in his. I said no. The sausages had been defrosted for the next night! He insisted, saying he’d go meatless the next dinner.
I had a nutty, as I recall. We had a BIG old argument. Big. Furious on both sides.
I think he ate the sausage.
That was long ago. We’ve always joked about the sausage fight, because it summed up so much of what was hard for us at that point in our lives.
Flash forward, way forward, to two days ago.
I no longer carry a clicker in the grocery store. I no longer have to stop shopping at a certain dollar amount.
Now we buy all of our meats and most of our veggies from a local food coop called “MassLocal Foods.”
Food is no longer a problem. But there are other issues popping up at this point in our lives.
Sometimes I tease Paul about his slipping memory. He keeps losing his keys and forgetting to shut doors. Old man!!
I won’t be teasing him anymore, and its all because of a package of sausages.
It was evening, Paul was just home from work. We needed to get organized for a big family reunion that we are attending this weekend. He went out to mow the lawn and I pulled a package of delicious, local, organic sausages out of the freezer for dinner the following night.
Just then Paul called me to come out and help him put away some lawn furniture. I did. First I put the sausages down, then I went out. We puttered around, put things away, and I did a little weeding.
We had a nice evening, a good dinner, and we went to bed. I woke up at 3 AM thinking, “I need to grab those sausages and bring them upstairs.” Then I fell asleep again. I woke up and went through a normal day without EVER remembering the misplaced meats.
Finally, when it was time to cook, I remembered that I had never retrieved the sausages. I went down to get them. They weren’t there.
I looked in the freezer in the garage. I looked all around the garage, on the lawnmower, on the workshelves, even in the folded baby carriage. Nope.
I looked in the upstairs freezer and in the fridge. Nope. I looked in the oven, the microwave, even in all the drawers. Nope, nope and nope.
I checked bookshelves, underwear drawers, dog beds. Nothin’.
Finally I sat down and googled “Alzheimer’s Disease.”
I texted Paul, just to fess up and give him a laugh. Then I started defrosting another package of sausages (I already had the rolls and wanted my delicious local treat!) I went down to the garage to throw something away and moved a pile of dishes and bowls that I had set aside for our camping trip.
And there they were. The missing sausages. Nestled in one of the plastic bowls and covered, for unknown reasons, by a plate.
Pretty funny, huh?
There are times in life when eating one little sausage seems like the greatest possible indulgence. Then there are times in life when you can buy all the sausages you need, but you keep forgetting where you put them.