Sunday, November 18, 2012

interview: maitland st. meals


Just browsing around Georgi's blog, I was instantly drawn to her hauntingly simple film scans, beautiful words and eloquent stories.  Weaved together with recipes and playlists, I knew right away that having Maitland St. Meals as one of Diapers & Skinny Jean's newest sponsors was instantly a perfect fit. The feeling you get just spending time over at G's space is enough to make you want to grab your cup of tea and stay for awhile.

I had the pleasure of getting to know this lovely lady a bit better, here were some questions asked...

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K:  What is it about blogging that you love?

G:  I began blogging just for me, to catalogue some of my writing, after I lost two of my journals. What I discovered, in the subsequent years, is the extensive and encouraging community of bloggers from around the globe. With their encouragement, I became more confident in myself as a writer. That - the community and connecting with like-minded people from the other side of the globe - is what I love. 

K:  Cooking, friends and gathering seems like an integral part of your life. How have your flatmates, your cooking, and the moments shared at that space influenced your writing? 

G:  Just over a year ago, inspired by some vegetarian blogs I read, I watched some videos of factory farming, and I decided to become vegan. I ate a vegan diet for three months - it was difficult, yes, but a worthwhile challenge to cook food that was still interesting and delicious, but without animal products. I moved in with my current flatmate, J, at the beginning of this year. She is passionate about eating organic and minimising impact on the environment as much as possible. Her views woke me up a little and I realised that the question of "what to eat?" was a lot more complex than I had first realised. I started to read about the effects of herbicides and pesticides used in conventional farming on the land, to learn more about the effect of carbon emissions and the importance of reducing them. Even though I began eating organic because of my flatmate, I am now convinced it is the best way to eat - better for the planet and arguably better for you. We eat organic, local produce, which also means we eat seasonally. Our milk comes from a local farmer who has 20 cows, farms organically, and produces raw milk. For me, living with J has been such a fantastic learning experience. It helps when you live with people who are passionate about the same things as you.. especially this time of year, when the supermarket is filled with tomatoes and aubergines but our organic shop is not because local growers aren't producing them yet. I don't think I've ever waited for a tomato with such anticipation before! Writing about my own experience and recipes we use will hopefully help to convince or persuade others that it is easy to eat a healthy, minimal impact diet. 

Moments shared at Maitland St. are special to me - the end of the day is when we all gather to relax, unwind, and cook food. Sometimes it's just a simple frittata, other times it's a planned feast, but if we're all home, we do take the time to sit down to a meal - even if that means we're eating dinner at 10pm. I'm also passionate about sharing food and I'd rather invite friends over for dinner than go out together. There's something nice about cooking for your friends. 


I write about these moments, not just to inspire others, but to inspire myself. There are always those times when you don't feel like cooking when you get home after a long day, and when it's just J and me, sometimes we have been known to eat toast and tea for dinner. But it's not hard to make the effort, just to put some lentils on to boil and pick some salad greens from the garden - and it helps if you have recipes at your fingertips. I don't think I'll ever be not passionate about sharing a meal with people! 


K:  What inspires you?

G:  Passion and commitment, selflessness, community.

K:  Tell us a bit more about you - where are you from?

G:  I was born in the capital city of Aotearoa, Wellington. I'm the oldest child of four, all of whom still live in Wellington. I live in the less-populous South Island, in the university city of Dunedin. I moved out of home when I was 18 and now I'm 24 - so Dunedin has become my home although Wellington always holds a special place in my heart. During the day I work as a PhD student studying the genetic regulation systems of a bacteria that can infect immuno-compromised humans, such as those with cystic fibrosis. My creative side competes for my attention by keeping me up (sometimes until the early hours) writing poems and prose, which I share at a pastiche (http://a-pastiche.com) and writing recipes, which I share at winter meals & spring tunes (http://maitlandstmeals.blogspot.com). I feel better when there are flowers in the house, I've been to yoga this week, and there's milk for the morning coffee. I can get politically fired up at times and have been known to shout back at online videos of politicians when I don't agree with them. I hope there will be a Green government in NZ in my lifetime.

K:  Any projects or special new things you're working on?

G:  My food blog has only been up and running for the past six weeks, so I think that counts! In other writing projects, there are a couple of important deadlines I want to submit for next year - they are always in my mind. As far as photography goes, I have a long term goal of upgrading to a DSLR so I can continue my love affair with the 50mm lens.. but for now I'll settle for shooting on film.

K:  If told to only use three words to describe yourself, which would you choose?

G:  Loving, observant, stubborn.

(Lovely film scans provided by Georgi)


5 comments:

  1. I love how Georgi described herself! I'm with her on being observant and stubborn as hell! But, I need to work on the loving part ; )

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  2. Just started following G in the last few weeks.. So happy to have found her!

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  3. blush.. thank you so much. x

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  4. Losing two journals! That would've been quite heartbreaking?
    Georgi and her blog are just lovely. So glad to know she is your latest sponsor here.
    Ronnie xo

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  5. Gosh, what a beautiful interview. I love how Georgi mentions it's important to be surrounded by passionate like-minded people. They lift you and give enormous weight to your values - so true in life just as it is for the blogging community. And I particularly love the bit about inspiring oneself, not just other people. It's exactly how I feel; sharing, creating and documenting is helping me live my best life and it shows (to me) my true colours and what makes my heart sing. What a lovely way to announce a new sponsor. Guess where I'm heading right now?!

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