Monday, August 25, 2008

Happy Blogiversary! One year of Rice and Beans

This, my 101st post, is to commemorate a little happening that slipped by me while I was enjoying myself on the farm. That notable event was the 1 year anniversary of Rice and Beans: A Belizean in DC.

Its hard to believe that a year has passed since I started this blog, but in fact it has only been 12 months and 2 weeks since I posted my first post and started on this fateful journey. It has been a fun and delectable one, that is for sure!

With school I have found it hard at times to post as much as I would like, and I dearly wish that I had more time to browse other blogs and participate in blogging events. Despite this, I have greatly enjoyed interacting with my fellow food bloggers, reading their wonderful blogs, trying their recipes and drooling over their photos. Thanks to all of you and to all my readers out there for your helpful comments and emails and general encouragement. Its nice to know that I'm not blogging in a vacuum!

But beyond the amiable community of the food blogging world this little web page has brought even greater opportunities and changes to my life. Early this spring I received an email from one Dr. Richard Wilk, an anthropologist at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, and the director of the country's first PhD program in the Anthropology of Food. Dr. Wilk has conducted extensive research in my home country of Belize for the past 20 years, a good portion of which focused on the intersections between agriculture, food, culture and globalisation. He has published a great book about his findings, called Home Cooking in the Global Village, which I own and highly recommend. (It now smells strongly of Belizean coconut rum thanks to the adventures that my lost and now recovered luggage experienced a couple days ago, but that seems almost appropriate when I think about it).

Dr. Wilk found me through my blog and emailed me to let me know about the PhD program that he is directing. As I am currently in the middle of a masters degree in Anthropology, with plans to continue on to a PhD, I was quick to visit the Indiana University site. I was interested in what I saw and continued to correspond with Dr. Wilk over the succeeding months. Then coincidentally it turned out that he would be in Belize at the same time that I was. We ended up planning a meeting and I got to have dinner with him and his wife, archaeologist Anne Pyburn. We dined exceedingly well, but the most exciting part of the whole thing was talking to anthropologists who were interested in food, specifically Belizean food.

My little blog is to be thanked for giving me the opportunity to meet Dr. Wilk and Dr. Pyburn and to learn about Indiana University's PhD program. I will be visiting the campus on September 19th, and applying to the program this fall. If all goes well, Rice and Beans in DC will become Rice and Beans in Bloomington as I move to Indiana in August 2009 to start a PhD in the Anthropology of Food.

Its exciting to contemplate this next chapter in my life, and I owe this opportunity to food blogging. So on the first anniversary of Rice and Beans in DC, I would like to pose a toast to my blog and to many more posts!

8 comments:

Chennette said...

congrats on the anniversary! and the connection with the programme and Dr Wilk. It's incredible the things you gain from just deciding to share a little of your life online :-)
I've enjoyed the blog, hope for another great year! Even (perhaps especially) when you move to Indiana!

Brilynn said...

Happy blogiversary and congrats on all the great things that are happening right now. I can't believe it's been a year since you started blogging either, I remember when you sent me an email saying you had just started!

Lyra said...

Thanks for the kind comments guys! time sure does fly doesn't it? And thanks again, Brilynn, for inspiring me to start my blog! I was on your website when I first clicked on that fateful "create blog" button and headed off on this journey of food, photography and friends.

Daniel Koontz said...

Lyra,
Congratulations on turning 1! I've really enjoyed learning about Belizean food by reading you. Keep it up!

Best,

Dan
Casual Kitchen

Cynthia said...

This is such great news! Congratulations and much more success!

Herb of DC said...

Congratulations on your first blogiversary and as an IU alum I just want to say WELCOME! You will love Bloomington and Brown County!

p.s. brush up on your basketball!!!

Greg said...

Congrats! I dig the site.

Lyra said...

Thanks everyone for all the nice comments. Herb, As far as brushing up on my basketball, I'm afraid I'm not a big sports person, except when rooting for Belizean teams or watching the World Cup. Hopefully they wont hold that against me when I apply to IU!

Cynthia and Greg, thank you for the compliments:)I dont know how much posting I'll be able to do this semester but I'll try my best!