Thursday, March 23, 2006

"you are the best... you are the best... you are the best!!" It works.

I am a woman in a state of pure bliss. These days I get to eat what I want, made at home, made by loving hands. I don't have a new cook. The title has been conferred upon the hubby.

I have to digress to explain this. This is the time of the year that hubby gets nostalgic. Not for people or place. But for food. For his favourite vegetable which of course we do not find in this city. Very tender baby drumsticks. We find only the thick giant sized fully matured ones here.

It all started when we got a parcel of this craved for vegetable sent from home. Severe long distance consultations followed and the cooking began. I got home from office and snacked heavily. Wasn't sure about dinner timings. I hogged my solo TV time and tuned into melodramatic soaps while gorging on mom's coconut sweets sent the week before. Yes, we have been that lucky!

So apart from "Hey I need to grind these! How do you run this thing?" and "Are you sure these yellow weirdies are called mustard seeds?" I was left undisturbed. Finally, my multi talented man managed to cook the wretched vegetable in the style his childhood was used to. In tomato and mustard paste. Under ordinary circumstances, I wouldn't touch it, but here I was lapping it up with praises in every mouthful.

And it finally paid off.

"You like it?" Expectantly.

"Amazing! Never tasted anything this good before!! Slurp!!!"

"Do you think, I really cook well?" A little excited.

"Of course, sweetheart! I have realised you are an amazing cook!"

"Seriously?" Just a question, hardly needs affirmation anymore.

"And it's not just these drumbloodysticks. My guess is that you will now make magic with all kinds of cooking!!"

"You are joking." I detected a pleased smile on his face.

"I swear, I am not."

"Okay, tell me what you want to eat. Anything. Just name it. Hey, from now no, I will make you different things, exotic dishes, your favourites, everyday!!"

"Wow! You are so good with everything you do! I am almost jealous of you!!"

"Yesyes." Confident air of finality. The world-is-mine-attitude.

And my blissful dinners began. These days, as I leave office, an SMS precedes me home, "Tonight you may make me mutton, dry and spicy."

Thursday, March 09, 2006

when the heavens opened

5.30 am, the alarm goes off. I toss and switch it off, give myself another 5 minutes and snuggle close to hubby. Then I am up in the dark,swagger to the bathroom and flick on the light. As I vigoriously brush my teeth, the lights go off and I am wide awake. The threatened loadshedding? I strike a match and light two of my fat white candles in the bathroom and get dressed.

I look out of the balcony. Buildings in the far off suburb are lit. There is a strange navy blue hue all around. I rush to watch the eastern sky. It's getting purplish, and then I see a flash of light. Magic. The white curtains in the house glowed with a bluish reflection. I pulled them open and saw my entire house bathed in a shimmery blue. The white floor became the sky. I sat and watched my plants and thought they smiled at me.

Another flash struck beyond the hills. It was lightning! A very light rumble. I wait for that flash of beauty again. A strange calm settles in as dawn decides to break. I watch the sky let out slivers of silvery light through purple grey clouds. A rooster crows far off and breaks the silence. I am glad it survived the suspected bird flu massacre.

Suddenly the lights come on and it's a bright new day. Magic lingers for a while and then quietly slips away. I sigh and head to the gym. That's when the heavens opened and the rains came pouring down. The smell of dust hit me. I danced in joy, along with the palm trees. When I walked out of the gym, it was a squeaky clean day and with fresh blossoms and the most refreshingly green trees. I revelled in the power of the heavens, to simply bring in so much beauty. For no reason at all.

On an afterthought, there was a reason. Hubby's friend, a young man full of life was very sick last night. Severe stomach pain landed him in hospital. But with the city's doctors on strike, he was unattended and left helpless. Not much later, the heavens opened up to welcome him.