Over the summer, Pei-ru Ko from Real Food Real Stories reached out to ask me to collaborate with her on a private dinner which would also serve as a curated storytelling event. To be honest, it wasn’t a great time to ask. We were in the guts of the Alaskan fishing season. 2 hours of sleep. Very infrequent phone connectivity. My first reaction was to say, “No”. But Pei-ru has a way of phrasing questions and everything that she touches turns to something really special. In 2 short years, Real Food Real Stories has created a unique and impactful niche in the sustainable food community. Our collaboration has lead to me becoming connected with an ever more engaged audience and even to my Sunset Magazine debut.
My answer, from the boat, was a tentative yes.
The private dinner would be for a group called OSC2. A coalition of successful, sustainable businesses that have combined resources to collectively have an increased positive impact in their communities and globally. You can read their story here and, after you do you’ll see why this was an opportunity that I couldn’t pass up.
The dinner itself would be following their Board of Directors meeting and the storytelling would take place during the meal itself.
The menu was designed to capture both austerity of shipboard life and contrast it with the abundance and availability of produce that we feel here in California.
The food component came easy, I’ve done that for a long time, but I procrastinated the storytelling piece away. For the last storytelling event that we collaborated on, Pei-ru reminded me, “Just tell the story, living it was the hard part”.
For this unique group of food entrepreneurs, I wanted to have something that they could relate to. How the crazy shit that we do that sometimes feels like a diversion from our true path is actually our path. From stability is born an acceptance and tolerance of risk and it’s from risk that growth emerges. My parents provided a stable platform from which I could deep dive into the adventures that would create me. Looking back, a big piece of that stability came from daily meals together.
Now, sharing a meal with this group, I could draw out the connections through food and story.
We all have this opportunity to connect over food. In fact, at least a few times a day. Consider turning off your computer and putting your phone face down and connecting with the people around you. Your family. Your community.
Much thanks to Pei-ru Ko from Real Food Real Stories, Lara and Michael at OSC2 for hosting and organizing and my partner, Danielle, for patient support over a very busy week and weekend!