Ashpazkhune - The House of the Soup Cook (Part 1)


Ashpazkhune - The House of the Soup Cook (Part 1)
by Temporary Bride

My shopping bags were beginning to cut into my wrists and I struggled to find space to set them down. It was cold and a damp wind blew through London’s Borough Market.

This is one of those days when I seriously question what I do for a living.

WHY do I spend on average 2.8 hours shopping for food EVERY weekday?

WHY do I spend £6 on a peanut dish sized quantity of Marcona almonds? 

WHY do I allow ten complete strangers into my home to play with my knives, spill wine on my floor and make a tremendous mess that I will spend an hour on top of an already long day cleaning up after?

Why? Because they pay me. Because I left investment banking to pursue my own, more gratifying career. And because I love this. Really.

My blackberry bleeped in my pocket. It was a text message:

“Do you want to have sex. NOW?”

“OK,” I texted back. “But I have a class tonight. I only have about half an hour.”

I dragged my bags to the curb and hailed a taxi. I hoped I’d at least have time to put everything in the fridge before he arrived.

I had only managed to remove my coat when the doorbell rang. I took his coat from him and hung it up beside mine. He smiled and reached his hands around my waist and kissed me. I kicked my bags of lovingly selected produce across the floor.

I've never liked the way he kisses me. In the beginning I think the attraction was because he was famous. And smart.

But I love his smell. He smells oily and leathery and his breath tastes of alcohol.

I used to think that he was going to marry me, that we’d become this kind of ‘it couple’ - a food photographer and his young, food-sensual bride. We'd drive across the Caucasus in a beat-up Landrover and live on love and Khachapuri.

Four years later his real wife still lives in Spain and they are still having problems and I still take his calls. 

Plus I won’t be having sex in Iran. It's probably good to stock up.

“From what I hear about Tehran, you’ll probably be able to take your pick there,” he said. His warm breath was wet in my ear as he pulled me onto the bed.


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Jahanshah Javid

Stay in London

by Jahanshah Javid on

Don't go back to Iran! :)

You're a wonderful writer.


Dear Temporary Bride,

by Monda on

My gut reaction right now is to advise you to drop this man! Somewhere I hope you have, already. Because it feels easier to write about something past, than present. Well then, I'd definitely look forward to reading more. 

6 pounds for Marcona almonds?! Here we have importers and shops that provide ingredients for restaurants... for instance those almonds would be around 4, since they work on order volume, rater than item.