30 DAYS IN 1 EPISODE
One gets a very special window into life as a whole when they dedicate time to one person —because of their real interactions with those around them and close to them, their habits, their customs, you get a unique sense of place.
Through spending time with one local character in his/her natural surroundings Jane will get a sense of food, life, and community no matter where, and bring the viewer along for the adventure. Getting off the beaten path so that she can experience food and life the way the locals do, she’ll take what she’s learned and help make these local cuisines feel more accessible while still feeling exotic and special.
ACT 1: Routine
The episode opens with a montage of a specific person’s morning routine. The shots are close up, intimate, and artistic and the ambient sounds of the activities are discernible. Like puzzle pieces coming together to create a whole picture, with each shot the viewer gets a better sense of where this place is and who this person might be. Jane is there too, along for the ride, comfortable and at home participating in the tasks along side this person. They are going through the daily motions of life together.
ACT 2: Discovery.
We flash back to when Jane arrives in the country and there is a flurry of activity as she orients herself in her surroundings. The viewer joins her as she takes in this new place – the people, the climate, the sights, sounds, and smells. She explores the scene, navigating transportation and speaking with people until she eventually finds someone who is willing to let her tag along and take her off the “beaten path” so that she can experience food and life the way the locals do.
ACT 3: Experience
Jane immerses herself in the habits and customs of her host. She will find out about that person’s relationship to food – where their ingredients come from (harvesting, foraging, hunting/fishing, marketing) where they cook (in a kitchen, over a fire) what vessels and utensils they use (pots, pans, wooden bowls, fine china) and who they cook for (themselves, family, friends, tourists, soldiers, royalty). As Jane learns and becomes increasingly familiar with this way of life, the earlier “routine” sequence is contextualized for the viewer. The audience joins Jane’s journey as she goes from being an outsider in a foreign place to finding a sense of community and belonging among new friends.
ACT 4: Reflection.
This feels like a cool down after an intensive period. In a quiet, beautiful location, Jane will cook/ demonstrate a meal. Taking what she’s learned over the course of the episode, applying it to a meal, and using this time to reflect on where she has been and what she will take away from the experience. Everywhere she goes and everyone she meets becomes a part of her distinct culinary style. The episode will always end with Jane extinguishing the lighting of where she is sleeping. (Torch off, fire out, candle blown out, light switch off etc.)
Local character is a street vendor/ spice salesman who lives in a small, colorful riad just outside of downtown with wife, daughters, and brother and his family. Jane play games with him and his friend at night, smokes kif (hashish) with them, visits his spice supplier, a street market at night, easts street food. He’s friends with one of the snake guys in the square. Last meal: Go to a Berber Village outside of Marrakech. Much quieter. Little clay Berber house with basic kitchen. Make a couple of simple tagines (with spices from new friend) with carrot, cumin, cilantro salad and almond couscous, showing how to preserve lemons etc. Then: Jane returns to her mattress on the floor. Lamp with fire blows out.
Local character is a young man who speaks English and is interested in us. He sells packaged food at the market. His father is a fisherman and his is a fruit vendor on a boat. He lives in the floating city/ village. Jane sit at the market with him for a bit with him and his friends. Meet his mother and father. Have a meal around a table with all of them, laughing and talking and me not understanding. One night we swim in the bay and get some late night food in a group of people. Last meal: Jane moves inland to the rice paddies to spend her last night in, away from the hustle of the bay. She’s picked up a great chopping board and a cook knife, but is using an upside down container as a table and a little fire to make a Vietnamese meal. Then: fire out. Lights out. sound of insects.