From the dining area it was natural he would find his way to the kitchens. It was impressive . . . and probably the most modern part of the ship. It was surely the cleanest.
“I know what you are thinking.” The cook had said, seeing the surprise on Mikes face. “Grease all over the place and dirty dishes stacked precariously was what you thought you would find on a tub like this, am I right or what?”
Mike nodded, taking it all in. “This kitchen could be found in a restaurant. Or one of my suites.”
“I eat, cooking seemed the natural compliment to that activity.” Mike shrugged and looked to the stove. “So why do scavengers in the middle of a battlefield rate a chef?”
“The Captain knows a thing or two about work because he fought his way up the ladder. He knows that keeping your people happy is the best way to keep them working at peak efficiency not to mention even willing to take the risks of going into space. I and this kitchen are one of the perks that keep this ship running” The chef straightened with pride.
“I’ll bet you are. I had some of your cooking and I know it made me want to take a bit more time getting back to base. The meal was Amarran but you used Minmatar style spices, why?”
The chef chuckled. “You do have a palate, don’t you? It wasn’t modern but a very very old recipe. I collect such and that one comes from so far back that Minmatar WERE just being conquered by the Amarr. I found the recipe in a BOOK, would you believe it? This day and age and someone was still writing on paper.” He shook his head. “But there is a lot of history on pages and paper. Stuff decays, burns, is not easily transmitted or kept and as a result it gets lost. I sometimes wish I could reach back in time and rescue all the knowledge that has been lost. . .so many recipes.”
Mike looked off into the distance. “A lot can be lost and every now and again, somebody finds someting. Funny ting is, they might not know what it is they done found, eh?”
“Exactly. I’d kill to get my hands on some authentic old style Gall recipes but they never survive.”
“Cept by work o mouth.” Mike shook his head. “Man you gots me thinking hard and when I get like that I need to keep busy. Lemme teach ya how ta make some tin special. How many onions you gots?”
—while it took two days for the more delicate members of the crew to recover from the next meal it was declared a success by the chef and his visitor. Both were heard to sing “If you can’t stand the heat” at the top of their lungs as they spiced and served what could be considered the culinary equivalent of napalm—
Where I come from camp cooks are always supposed to be better than you expect. They have to be to make up for the otherwise miserable work that loggers/miners/oilrig folks live under.
But extend the idea. If you are a CEO or morale officer do you do things to keep your own people happy? Have you got perks and ‘good food’?
Mike finally is starting to realize that books are important . . . not just as curiousities