I had to run outside, of course, and meet a few! You can imagine, Reader Dear, how I wished to have done a little pre-event studying of national flags! (I had to ask too many chefs apologetically for their country of origin. [Lucky you, I'll just tell you who's who!])
Here is Magnua Rehback, he prepares food for the King of Sweden. I had a nice conversation with Magnua; he's so friendly and so fluent in English, I could barely detect an accent!
Immediately I had another regret:
I had nothing with which to take notes. So I hope you can offer me sympathy for the fact, Dear Reader, that all those interesting tidbits I gleaned from the handful of chefs to whom I spoke are now a jumbled-up olio in my head.
One chef told me that he cooks for a large and extended family. Fourteen, I believe, is the number for whom he prepares meals. It could have been Magnua. Or, hmm. Perhaps it was the chef to the King of Thailand, Norbert Kostner, who is actually Italian. Maybe it was Charles Richardson, seated at the table with his wife. "I am chef to the Gabonese president. Gabon is the only African country represented here," he told me. "And I am not even African. I'm Scottish! (All this nation-swapping! How am I to keep track?!)
But, back to the moment.
The chefs, many with wives accompanying, made their way into the barn and were seated on the Amish church benches.
This took a fair amount of time.
When most had already been seated, Leroy, the Amish host, was ushering an older chef into the barn. "Do you have a wife?" Leroy asked, trying to determine if he needed a two-person spot at the tables.
"No," the chef responded, "but I'm looking for one! Can you get me one?"
(Are you looking for a husband, Reader Dear? A seasoned Italian chef with a sense of humor?)
And so all fell silent.
Reader Dear, in the quietness of the moment
I am going to pause, too...
(I promise to serve you the rest of this
course real soon)