We are back from our three week trip (don't worry, I plan to post more photos) and right now, I am enjoying a tomato sandwich. A simple, tomato sandwich with sea salt, light mayonnaise on fresh bread.
It is real, and it is spectacular.
While at the Triana Market in Sevilla one morning, after my coffee and toast with the locals, I came across a Mar Azul tomato, a relatively new variety grown naturally in the south of Spain. It has a blueish tinge, caused by a natural pigment. Yes, I am embarrassed to admit I first saw the tomato on a TikTok a couple of months ago and was intrigued. And yes, I purchase one of these tomatoes at the market with zero idea of what to do with it!
Until returning to our apartment at midnight after a wonderful concert outdoors at the Royal Alcazar Gardens (oh, a story all on its own, for another time).
Earlier that day, someone had posted a picture of a tomato sandwich and it looked quite good. I had the tomato, a coveted Mar Azul tomato grown locally. Fresh bread? Check! Mayonnaise? An olive oil substitute, check! Salt? Check! Even a slice of local cheese. While my wife and daughter went about getting ready for bed, I crafted what was, in my mind, the perfect tomato sandwich (complimented by some left over sangria)!
It was amazing!
To tell you the truth, I don't remember if I had eaten dinner that night...the whole "dinner like a pauper" advice. If I am being completely transparent, I don't think I've ever had a tomato sandwich before, unless partnered with bacon, or ham and cheese, or perhaps turkey.
But never with the tomato being the star of the show.
Since that moment in Sevilla, I've had several. I found the perfect tomato in Lisbon, and heirloom tomato yesterday at our local farmer's market, and today, I went for the garden fresh variety (someone else's, not mine).
So what is the actual point?
We often complicate our lives with what we covet. If I could only buy this, if I could only achieve this, if I could only go there, when often, the simplest things in life can being the most joy. We stayed at several AirBnB's during our three weeks on the road and didn't once miss not having all of our "stuff" around us. In fact, we were inspired by the clean surroundings of each place, having on hand what was needed, but not much else.
Yes, I realize the irony - I am in the business of getting consumers to buy "stuff."
Actually, that is not entirely accurate. I am in the business of finding the right products that consumers need and want and communicating the value of those products, and our values as an enterprise. I find that as I am getting older, hopefully a bit wiser, what I truly want has to serve a greater purpose, hold greater value than what I used to spend my money or time on in the past. Sometimes all of the bells and whistles are just for show, when something far more simple would do just as well.
Hopefully this is making a bit of sense, and not just the tomato talking...
Keep the faith!