Friday, 25 November 2016
“Give us this day our daily bread” is a prayer that takes on new layers of meaning when living in the village. For the people around me, bread is a special treat, not a daily event. Daily sago on the other hand, is what makes a meal. In fact the word for sago is the word for food, as it’s not a real meal unless it involves sago.
Although I am from a more bread-based tradition, I still do not have daily bread in the village. Instead, I have Saturday bread, as that is the day on which I have time and energy for baking. With no stove, I make my bread in the frypan as a series of foccacias. With no refrigeration, I make enough bread for a few days, but not enough to start a mould farm. Fresh bread lasts three days, and even then it pays to double check for furry spots before eating lunch on Monday. After that I eat crackers for lunch until baking day comes around the following Saturday.
Even without daily bread, my daily needs are well met, which is what the prayer is really about. I am well set up in the village, with both the food I bring with me and the food others give to me. I am not in want and with a little forethought and planning, can have a healthy balanced diet. In fact, more often than not, my daily bread (or crackers) comes with my daily nutella, which is a luxury item, but one which softens the edge of each day J