All notes written by Sarah Leslie | Notes on Looking

Sweet Salt, Seagulls, Flamingos, At the Grocery Store

  Sweet Salt   Worker bees, the bees who collect pollen are female. Transform pollen into honey. Before black sage blooms it looks like a succulent. Cold, and hard as if from the mesozoic era and then from its circle of leaves appear purple blossoms. Black sage grows in the deserts of Southern and Baja California. While collecting pollen from its flowers, half the hive may die from the heat and lack of water. In a spoonful, you can taste the hovering desperation of the bees without hydration. To make bread the only ingredients you need are: water, flour, yeast, and salt. Bread in Tuscany is made without salt. One story blames the lack of salt in Tuscan bread to widespread poverty in the Middle Ages, poverty in which salt was too expensive a commodity. Tuscan bread or pane tuscano is known throughout Italy for being unsalted, sciocco. This words also means: silly, foolish, stupid, daft, insipid, tasteless, nitwit, noodle. Cooks rely on salt to preserve meat. Enhance flavor. A Czech fairy tale begins: A king had three daughters. He asked them how much they loved him. The eldest replied, more than gold. The middle, more than silver and all the jewels in the world. The youngest said, I love you more than salt.   Seagulls, Flamingos, Atwater   Crouching on the curb in atwater Seagulls circling above us. What are they doing here, we wonder, there’s no water. I tell them to fly west. There’s flamingos in the middle of Bolivia, I say. The sun is glaring. Cacti overflow from a green dumpster. They visit a lake in...