2300 Co Rd 29, Sandstone, MN 55072

My Chef … El Jefe!

You cannot put a price on freedom. There are so many luxuries I am sure you all take for granted as you move through your daily routine. Which is why adversity continues to be a powerful catalyst for transformation and change. When we are comfortable, and living our best lives, we never realize how good we have it. Only when we lose it all do we finally look back, and think damn, that was great. It literally puts everything into perspective.

From not being able to sleep on a real bed, in a dark room, all alone; to having to constantly get naked in front of others; to wearing shower shoes in the shower because there is an abundance of “male bodily fluids” and athletes foot fungi lurking all about; to eating real food, or at least somewhat real food, there is a lot we do not consider. I mean, I can go on and on about what to be grateful for, however, it is the “real” food that is the topic for today’s post.

I want to talk about my gratitude for my chef … EL JEFE! Jefe is the Spanish word for boss, and let me tell you, Jefe is a boss. A cartel member serving a 25-year sentence for drug trafficking, he is one of the best cooks on the compound. Look, when you lose your freedom, you quickly realize how important food is to all of us. When your stomach aches of hunger, and you are sick of eating fucking bologna sandwiches, you remember how sacred food really is. It makes you day dream constantly about all of the food possibilities of the world. Not being able to go out to eat, or to a grocery store, is a luxury that we never think about until we can no longer do it.

Which is why I am always excited when EL JEFE cooks for me. You would be surprised what he is able to make with the limited resources we have in here. It is astounding. Considering commissary (prison store items) is nothing more than glorified vending machine food, many would be shocked by the look and taste of his tamales, pizzas, sopas, enchiladas, tacos, burritos, rice bowls, sushi, and much, much more. He gets down!! And the prices are great too. Five stamps for a chicken quesadilla ($1.50), 15 stamps for a medium-sized pizza ($5.50), and 2 stamps for two tamales ($0.60!).

To compliment all of this, I might buy two ice cold sodas for three stamps, and a slice of cheese cake for desert for 4 stamps. Look, my chef … EL JEFE, has got it all. And for that, I am grateful!

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