Every week I write a column called BE YOU for one of the local papers (The Times of Acadiana) – Each week someone different answers the questionnaire – the paper often has to edit them,  so here are all the answers, unedited (the whole truth) This week was Paul Ayo

Paul Ayo (along with his wife, Jenine)  is an owner of a new Lafayette business, E’s Kitchen (in Parc Lafayette). It only takes a few minutes for Paul’s passion for kitchen accessories and all things food to get you in it’s grip. The store is called E’s kitchen after his daughters Emma and Elise – it’s a real family business. Stop in, visit with the owners, but be warned – you will come out smiling, and quite possibly with a new (and very cool) kitchen gadget  in your hand.

What was your first job?
I helped train hunting dog to retrieve.

Describe a typical day in your life.
Since I opened E’s Kitchen life has been crazy and every day is a little different. I always start the day with hugs and kisses from my wife and two girls but after that nothing is typical and that is what excites me.

What advice would you give the younger you?
Stop waiting for the perfect time. There is no perfect time.

What event in your life most shaped who you are now?
Meeting my wife, she changed my perspective on the world.

What values do you live by?
Work hard, play hard and enjoy life

What do you most appreciate?
I most appreciate all the great people in my life.

What is your favorite journey?

Where is your favorite place to be alone?
My favorite place is on a beach with the waves coming in.

What living figure most inspires you?
Guy Fieri, he lives out loud and cooks great food.

What was the best advice you were ever given?
Believe in yourself.

What book would you tell everyone to read?
“The Godfather” by Mario Puzo.

What is the best thing about where you live?
When I was younger I wanted to leave Lafayette so I did. I learned after living in several places that there is nowhere like Acadiana. We have the best food, the friendliest people and I don’t have to shovel snow.

How do you “let the good times roll” ?
Hanging out with friends and family and tons of great food! My wife and I especially love both Festival International and Festival Acadian. Both fill Lafayette with wonderful music, great food and happy people

What did u want to be when you grew up?
I never agreed to grow up.

What is your motto?
You only get one chance at life.

How would you like to be remembered?
I want to be remembered as a good person and a great parent.

What do you say to yourself when you doubt yourself?
You have not failed until you quit trying.

What three things are vital to BEing YOU?
My family, great food and having fun

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
What are we going to eat?

What is your favorite word?

What do you collect?
Tattoos and kitchen stuff, although if you ask my wife I am a pack rat and collect everything I can get my hands on. I am working on that.

What food could you live on for a month?
I don’t think I could stand just one thing for an entire month. I love to many foods to narrow it down to one. I will say Mexican food so that I still have options.

What would you change about yourself?
I would like to be taller but then I would probably hit my head on things even more.

What literary, movie or cartoon character do you most identify with?
I most identify with Gambit from the X-men comics. He is the only Cajun super hero.

Describe yourself in five words.
Different. fun. helpful. crazy. loud.

What is your idea of happiness?
Getting big hugs from my little girls.

What is your favorite movie?
My favorite movie is a little known scifi flick called Dune.

What music defines who you are?
There is no single genre of music that defines me. For me the music has to have passion behind it. I listen to all sorts of music depending on my mood and what is available.

What do you most regret?
Not always giving 100%

What question do you wish I’d asked?
What is the best kitchen tool?

What would the answer be?
An open mind.

Go and find out more, and stay updated about E’s Kitchen on Facebook.