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When I was 20, I lived for five months with a woman named Fabienne and her two young daughters in the city of Toulouse, in southern France. Beyond my delight at speaking French all day and indulging in a daily chocolatine from a neighborhood bakery in the afternoons, I was enthralled by something much more mundane: Fabienne’s refrigerator.
Every evening when I returned from my classes, I’d peek into the family refrigerator to see if I could determine what we might be having for dinner. I was foiled every single time. I knew that we wouldn’t be dining on butter and cheese alone, but night after night, those were the only things of any substance that I found. Despite the spartan contents of Fabienne’s fridge, she churned out consistently delicious meals. Fresh ingredients, daily stops to the market, and an unrelenting mission to finish what she’d purchased were the secrets to her tidiness.
Keeping a refrigerator like Fabienne’s is still something that I aspire to. Until I get there, I rely on a little trick that keeps my refrigerator smelling fresh, if not also perfectly edited.
N.B.: This post is an update; it was first published on Remodelista on July 31, 2014.
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