If you live outside your home country, you would know the craving of food from home that comes every now and then.
I had one of those cravings over the weekend and cooked up a storm. I made different sauces, what we call soups in Nigeria. I made ogbono (irvingia) and egusi (melon) soups. With satisfaction I packed it all in bowls, each bowl enough for two servings, and put them away in the freezer. It has been four months since I had any of these delicacies.
My mother, bless her, by now is used to her children moving away from home every now and then. She is always ready to pack some Nigerian food stuff for us to move with. When she was doing her job, I kept telling her how the food she was packing was too much. She packed it anyway and packed my suitcase for me :-) On days when I have the craving for any of these food items, I am thankful for her wisdom.
I woke up this morning with the craving for ogbono soup, so that was going to be lunch for me. I was heading out to work in one of the refugee camps rather early, but did not forget to bring out a bowl of soup from the freezer. I knew it would have thawed by the time I got back from the camp.
On my return, I went to the kitchen dreaming of eba (made from cassava and eaten with soup) and ogbono soup, only to see the bowl it was supposed to be in washed clean. I opened the fridge, not sure if I was expecting to see it there, but it wasn't there. I went to find the lady who cleans to ask her what happened to my soup. It may have made me feel much better if she said she ate it but she started by 'I thought'...I didn't want to hear it. And with mixed emotions, I said 'you threw my soup away'. Her response was 'oh, I'm sorry...' I continued washing my hands then she asked if I wanted her to make anything for me. In that moment, I looked up and said, 'ask, always ask. Please just go'.
I put my heart in those pots of soup, I generously added fish and meat the way we like it cooked, rich! And she threw a whole bowl of it away. I didn't know whether to cry...thankfully, I packed it the way I did, so there was another bowl...