On the lunch buffet at the hotel restaurant today, there was chicken stew, some African style chicken stew. Chunky white meat with vegetable in a clear white broth. I took some to go with my rice.
A closer look at the stew when I was seated revealed that it was actually a fish stew. My first bite into the chunky fillet, it was flaky and tender. And then the taste and scent was unmistakeable, fishy and salty. That instantly triggered my longing for the fish balls soup from home. Big round fish balls, smelling just as fishy and salty floating in a bowl of piping hot clear white broth.
I remember mom used to bring us kids all out in town on weekends for shopping and fun. At the end of the day, we'd packed onto a rickshaw with our shopping bags and exhausted bodies heading to the hawker stalls under the giant big trees in town center for dinner. The simple yet delicious fish ball soup was a staple on the table. That was one of the highlights of my day. Maybe my week!
And suddenly I was 5 again, squatting at the front of the rickshaw carriage, looking forward to the fish balls soup dinner at the end of the day out in town with mom.
Oh ma, happy Mother's Day!