I have an affinity for table settings. Dishes, glasses, table linens. I’m not big on cooking or eating, but creating the place to sit together with food is something I love to do. And why? .
Perhaps it’s the rules.
They are clear cut and prescribed.
Perhaps it’s the memories.
My mother’s serving dishes,
my grandmother’s cake plates,
the blue and white dishes I got at a garage sale,
the glass tumblers from Cost Plus,
the Portmeirion collection I purchased through
a long defunct department store china club.
Perhaps it’s the process.
How the items are cared for, cleaned, and stored.
Dried, stacked, organized.
Actually it’s the cloth napkins.
Cloth napkins are not about how they make the table look.
Or how it feels to use them. That’s a bonus.
It’s ironing on a Sunday afternoon. A meditative act
with an end result that feels like perfection.
The pleasure is in the transformation.
From wrinkled to pressed to folded.
Ironing a cloth napkin is restorative. A way to see the world, for just a moment as orderly.