Monday, 24 September 2012

NOTHING TASTES BETTER THAN OTHER PEOPLE'S FOOD

"I wonder where darling Mother is?
I could really use a hand 
with this soup!"
At first, I thought I'd had the perfect weekend. I spent every second of Saturday and Sunday visiting with family and friends. But then afterward, as I lay in bed watching TV, a thought occurred to me: "I just spent the entire weekend eating other people's food." I didn't plan it this way, but this is how the weekend unfolded.

Saturday afternoon: Daughter and husband host a housewarming. Aside from the tour of their beautiful home, a lavish brunch is the highlight of the festivities. While Jade (a former caterer) is putting the finishing touches on the feast, I do what any normal mother would do: I go into the bathroom and take pictures of myself. 
Menu: Coconut shrimp, cold cuts and cheese platter, roasted red pepper and rice soup, arugula and feta-stuffed chicken with creamy pesto sauce, whipped  parmesan sweet potatoes, roasted root vegetables, pumpkin pie with shortbread crust. The only thing that could have made this better would be if Ryan Gosling had walked in the front door and taken a seat at the carefully laid place I always save beside me, just in case. 

Saturday evening: Off to visit friend who lives near daughter's new home. We crack open a bottle of Syrah and she starts bringing out plates. I instantly protest. "Oh, no need! If you could see what I just ate. I am absolutely STUFFED! . . . What kind of cheese is that?" 
Menu: Next thing you know, I've polished off a plate of summer sausage, some sort of creamy Asian noodle dish, half a block of parmesan cheese and some bread. With a dollop of shame.

Saturday night: Back to daughter's house to watch Precious. Been meaning to watch it for years but feared it was too sad. Which it was. Halfway through, Jade brings out a platter of snacks. Because she is a good daughter who doesn't want her poor malnourished mother to pass out halfway through the movie. I open my mouth to object but nothing comes out except, "Ooooh! Chips!"
Menu: Chilean lime chips, crusty bread, cheese, sliced pickles, grapes . . . with a generous bowl of self-loathing.

"I like the way my skin glows 
under these bathroom lights!"
Sunday: Wake up late, call Mom to see how she enjoyed the housewarming. Mom says she's just in the middle of making a dinner. Would I perhaps like to . . .  "Oh, no, no, that's not why I called. I just . . . uhm, what're you making?"
Menu: Chicken in mushroom sauce with white wine and red peppers, baked potato, fresh steamed vegetable medley. For dessert, utter shame and mortification.  

EDITOR'S NOTE: Marie is too embarrassed to face you all right now but she would like you to know that she feels like a mooch and a freeloader. I'm going to let her stew for awhile, but the truth is that some weekends you do the hosting and other weekends it's nothing but OPF (Other People's Food). Those are good weekends. One should enjoy the heck out of them.