Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Third Course: Plated Desserts

Well, this is the day that Madelaine begins her third course at the Western Culinary Institute, 'Plated Desserts'. I've no firm idea of what this entails, other than the fact that a plate will somehow be involved. Further fueling the mystery is the fact that, despite my most fervent entreaties, it looks doubtful that I'll find out what a plated dessert is from an example sent to me in the mail. Thus, I'll have to rely on Maddie's word as to what she's making and why.

I have no trouble with this state of affairs, mostly because Maddie has already proved that she is capable of making her way through the process without needing close oversight from me, May I say simply, thanks goodness for that, for her sake as well as mine. Amazingly, without my oversight, she's now finished both beginning pastry and bread courses. Ok, so it's not really amazing that she did so with out my help because the credit is hers and hers alone. Though her start was a bit rocky, she's made steady improvement over the course of the past sixteen weeks, and is now on pace to graduate in April of next year.

As a reward for this achievement, I'll be traveling to Portland just after Thanksgiving, to spend some time with her. Actually, it's not fair to call it an achievement yet. Maddie would agree with this, for I am too quick to puff up with pride. Nonetheless, I have no cause to shrink from from the feeling, for, though it is perhaps premature praise for my daughter is well deserved indeed.

Why? Well, to say that Maddie has come a long way already is a considerable understatement, since most folks do not know just how much of a challenge the task of completing high school actually was for her. Given the nature of secondary schooling these days, Madelaine's recent keen observation that she has learned more in the last four months in Portland than she learned in four years of high school is not unexpected, since the superficiality of the experience is obvious to all but those who actually enjoyed their high school years.

However, most people do not have the added burden of overcoming dyslexia in addition to questioning the relevancy of their 'studies', so for Madelaine, just getting through high school was a significant accomplishment. Honestly, the diploma 'earned' from Crockett, was simply a reward for endurance, nothing at all like the experience she is getting from Culinary School and by living on her own.

It is really quite true to say that Madelaine is learning more than a trade.

She is learning how to live, and doing quite well at it, thank you very much.

1 comment:

valgal said...

and that's not even mentioning her learning how deal with cut/burned fingers! she certainly has come a long way in a short time - i am so proud of her, too.....