As in every home, the kitchen is the meeting place at Mary’s House. It’s expansive and there is plenty of window light. The House has been generously equipped with a fine stove and cook top, a microwave, dishwashers and ample fridge space.
These are appreciated. But it is the bowls of fruit and other supplies on benchtops and the natural camaraderie of a kitchen that makes it special. Many of the House residents are fine cooks and, at times, we have enjoyed the aromas of fresh muffins, spicy Asian curries and Mediterranean vegetable dishes.
So, it was a surprise to learn that one such lady in the house did not have any culinary experience. On my afternoon shifts at the House, I would see her return after 3pm and immediately tuck into hot takeaway food. I thought this was simply hunger but as we chatted she told me she’d never learned to cook. We agreed it was time she made a start. She was keen and, after checking the pantry, I sent her off to the nearest supermarket for fresh mince steak and dried Italian herbs.