The scene laid out before me was a rush of sound, colors, flavors, and smells.
At the center of the storm was a man dressed in crisp chef whites. He hardly needed to speak as his kitchen operated like a well-oiled machine around him. As he reached for each part of the elaborate dishes he assembled, they were always at hand. The choreography perfect, the timing impeccable, and the finished presentations works of art. At the outer fringes, interns worked frantically, hoping one day to be noticed and brought into the inner circle.
Almost as an afterthought, the finished works of art were whisked away by the perfectly attired staff for delivery to the patrons.
No movements were wasted. Each player knew their part in the larger dance, and each arrived on their marks exactly on cue.
And yet, somehow, each managed to make room for the kitten that wandered from station to station as if inspecting everyone’s work, and who seemed to be giving the final approval to each dish served.
I knew without asking that no one would admit the kitten was there, that the kitten was the real master of this kitchen.
But of course, she was.