Thursday, April 30, 2009

Sweet Surprise!

As the school year winds to a close and yet another group of students graduates and heads out into the "real" world, I find myself in the grip of bittersweet regret.

One of this year's graduating seniors, der Freiburger, is one I'll especially miss. I regret that we didn't have more shared kitchen experiences, given his keen interest in baking and in learning new skills (like making a soufflé).

But one of the reasons why I've treasured his presence in the department is his capacity to brighten my day with little things. When he has baked biscotti or croissants, he has brought samples into the office to share (and to get a gentle critique, generally enthusiastic).


The latest of his sweet surprises came from a recent trip to Columbus for a job interview. As he declared, he couldn't drive all that way just for an interview, he had to explore. And in his wanderings, he found a small artisan chocolate shop and purchased a few little treats to share.

This box, then, was his gift to me: four dark chocolates laced with different flavors (maple, raspberry, vanilla, and cinnamon). What a lovely surprise!

I've only sampled one thus far -- the cinnamon heart -- but the depth of the chocolate flavor made the perfect foil for the candy heat of the cinnamon. And if the others are this good, I will definitely enjoy them, perhaps even sharing one or two with the Renaissance Man when I see him next.

It's such a little thing, but sometimes it's so heart-warming to be remembered by a friend in such a sweet way.

And now I'll miss der Freiburger even more.

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