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Anthony Bourdain was a brilliant journalist who talked about the world through the lens of food and culture.

My husband and I were neither foodies nor were we particularly good cooks when we got married. I had worked as a waitress for several years and one of my husband’s best friends was a chef but neither of us had managed to absorb the cultural and emotional importance of food.

Then we moved across the country into a totally different culture and suddenly food mattered A LOT.  It was here that we discovered Anthony Bourdain and became (frankly) a little obsessed. Bourdain was the reason we were able to look at our new culture as an adventure and at foods like goat’s head as something awesome and exciting and inclusive rather than scary or problematic. He was the reason we had Food Network on a lot and he was the reason we started experimenting with cooking.

Cut to a decade later. Anthony Bourdain’s transparent battle with mental health is over. He fought long and very hard for his life and the things he loved. As tempting as it is to say that depression “won,” I think that kind of mindset overlooks such an important point that Bourdain himself made many times. Neither meals nor life are ultimately about the endpoint. The whole purpose of them is to be IN them – the experience. The way they end is not the point. The journey, the experience, the meal, those are the things that matter.

In the end, you’re just happy you were there, with your eyes (and mouth) open and lived to see it.

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