I approach Grand Central Market. Eyes open, stomach ready to be fed. With one step into the facility, my nostrils contract in shock. Hundreds of aromas float through the air, but there is one that has captivated me. I am no longer me, but an animal who has smelled the unmistakable scent of fresh flesh. I saunter cautiously throughout the establishment, wherever my body takes me. I am in full primal mode, deferring to the whim of my instincts.
Several creatures pass me, as the trance-like state that has consumed me is causing me to travel at a stoic pace. If I were lower on the food chain, I would have been trampled and devoured like yesterday’s meat. But I am no hyena. I am the Queen of the Jungle. Strong, careful, alert. Waiting to meet my reward. Ready to pounce, but only at the right moment.
I pass various other members of the Animal Kingdom acquiring their feed, the strong asserting their influence over the weak. Whoever eats first will reign supreme. I could be impatient like the serfs before me, but my inner lioness only wants the best, the freshest.
With every pace in the right direction, my taste buds erupt in perspiration. My tongue is tingling. My body is engaged. Soon, I will succumb to the pleasure that awaits me.
Suddenly, I stop in my tracks. The target has been spotted. The sight that lies before me is pure magnificence. I praise my restraint for approaching prudently, without bringing attention others. Lionesses don’t share. Before me is a heap of fresh carnitas, picked from the bone mere moments before. It is a vision of grandeur unlike any other. The steamy, seductive mass burns into my retinas, an image that will never be forgotten.
I hold the carnitas in my hands. I can feel its energy, its purpose, its story. My thoughts amble slowly over the previous life of this flesh until my saliva overflows like a dam that has been comprised. I can’t wait any longer. Fervently, and with a profound hunger, I scarf the meat into my mouth. A familiar feeling of ecstasy washes over my being, but with an unprecedented intensity.
I eat and eat until there is no more. I lick my chops, as my meal comes to a close. Sated, yet still hungry, for the next time we meet again.