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Just another Old Hippie trying to get by in today's Blue Meanie world, tinkering around with my old wok, bamboo steamer and assorted implements of counterculture cookery in a funky little kitchen the size of a postage stamp. When I'm feeling spiritually inclined, I can be found on the yoga mat, practicing Odissi steps, casting the runes or reading tarot. Dharma's always the first priority, but sometimes it takes a backseat to other things! If I'm in a musical mood, I like to spend my free time fiddling bluegrass tunes or hammering out rhythms on djembe, doumbek or congas. Usually, I just hang out at home, studying Norwegian, writing, or working on my rosemaling. When spring and summer roll around, you'll find me at Ren Faire and the Summer Solstice parade, maybe an occasional re-enactment or rendezvous. Left to my own devices, I'd probably spend all my time curled up with a book, eating Lindt truffles and Rochers. (A little discipline can be a good thing). Something I particularly enjoy doing is baking tasty, traditional goodies for our Sons of Norway potlucks, especially Syttende Mai and Jultrefest. Things I love: Lodge cast iron, Le Creuset, wooden spoons, and my thirty year-old carbon steel wok! I love cookbooks from the 70's with pen & ink drawings. These great old books have such a hand-sown, home-grown feeling about them! My all-time favorite is The Tassajara Bread Book! I learned how to bake from that book, so it will always have a very special place in my heart. When I was a kid, my greatest gustatory passion was Helms pastry. The Helms bakery was in Culver City, not too far from our neighborhood, and had a fleet of yellow and blue Divco vans that drove around town selling baked goods. (It was a great place to go on school field trips, too-- we'd each get a miniature loaf of bread to munch on after the tour). Anyway, the minute I'd hear the little whistle go toot-toot, I'd race out the door and head out to the street. You could step right up into the van, and the Helms man would pull out lacquered wooden drawers lined with parchment paper so you could choose from a dazzling array of freshly-baked breads and pastries. There were cream puffs, donuts (glazed, jelly and chocolate), applesauce spice cakes, eclairs, brownies, and all sorts of wonderful-smelling things to eat. Oh, what a treat! Even better than the Good Humor man and his ice cream truck! Alas, the bakery closed long ago, and the Helms man, like the Adhor Farms milkman, is a thing of the past. I hear that somebody restored and refurbished one of the old Helms vans several years ago, and is now driving around the streets of Montebello selling baked goodies as in the days of yore. If any of you live near there, keep your spare change handy and your ears peeled for the little whistle. You won't want to miss the experience! Oh, the memories...