Good MORNING!!! (good night)

I’m reading this title in the weird high-pitched voice I use to say good morning to cats when one appears (from sleeping, that is, not just like a random cat. I would in that case say hello, and not good morning, obviously). The reason is that I am talking about MY SOURDOUGH STARTER!!!!! And it is the closest thing I have to a pet.

Yes, that’s right: SHE IS AWAKE! (Yes, she. My Russian tutor tells me I may not call my plant “she” in Russian because “plant” is neuter; well, I ignored her then, and I’ll… ignore her now? if she tells me sourdough starter is neuter? Also, what should I name her? The sourdough starter, not the Russian tutor. She has a name.)

Day eight billion something

Anyway, a few days ago it finally became cold in New York, such that it was possible to conceive of turning on the oven at some point in the near future. I decided it was time for the sourdough’s hibernation to end. I took it out of the fridge and, well, to be perfectly honest, poured a lot of weird gray liquid down the drain, and then scraped a lot of weird gray former sourdough starter off the top and sides and put them in the garbage (and even took out the garbage). Then I fed it with some nice new whole-wheat flour and water and put it in the back of the oven with the oven light on.

The (temporary) problem was that the heat wasn’t actually on, so it was still super cold, and my sourdough starter is very sensitive to temperature, as I know from when it appeared to die last spring. I hoped it would somehow perk itself up in the oven.

Day eight billion something + 1

It didn’t, but this morning I was down by the stove dealing with sourdough things and felt a weird warm breeze. I was like, what is that?? Why is it warm? Where is it coming from??? It was heat coming from the radiator. I literally forgot what heat was. So I fed the sourdough (I removed some more of the old starter, since I have no idea what flour/water ratio it’s at, and put in exactly[ish] an ounce of flour and an ounce of water) and put its pot-holder hat on and put it on the floor by the radiator.

I got home tonight and IT WAS ALIVE!!!!!!!!!!!! It was all frothy and bubbly!!!!! I was deeply excited. Here is a picture of the corner of my apartment where all the alive things live (except me).

Plant and sourdough starter in kitchen

The weird dark layer is liquid, and it is supposed to be there (I think/hope).

(Oh, and except the cockroaches; I don’t know where they live.) (Also, I like that picture, and you can even see my cool Russian art through the window.) Continue reading