The best meal ever – haibun for dVerse II

If you ask me about the best meal I ever had, I’ll smile, and think of Sydney. I’ll tell you how we sat on the waterfront, by the place where the seaplanes dock, in a restaurant called the Catalina. We went for lunch, six of us, and ate and drank and laughed and talked. We were so young, life was an adventure, the sun was shining and the food was so good.

Don’t ask me what we ate. I only know it was delicious. And there was lobster. Lots of lobster. And a different wine with every course. I only know we stayed there all afternoon, and the waiters were lovely, and the sun was shining, and the food was so good. We stayed on, while everyone else left, after pudding, after coffee, watching the sea birds and the sea planes, and the sun on the water. I’m sure we drank champagne. We definitely drank champagne.

If you ask me about the best meal I ever had, I’ll smile, and think of Raj, who always knew the best restaurants, the best wines, the best cocktails. I’ll smile, even though there are tears in my eyes, because now there are only five of us, and the bravest of us is gone. The one who ordered the champagne. The one who made every meal a celebration.

Catalina calls
Sun on the water, shining,
Bubbles rise in fun

 

This is my second haibun for this prompt. It’s fortuitous – I’ve written about Raj before, our fun-loving, brave friend. It’s her birthday today, and she was there when I had the best meal ever. 

Yum yum -haibun!

Sunday slipped through my fingers, lost in a whirl of rugby and rowing, mud and river water, friends talking, kids being delivered here and there, growing washing piles – all the detritus of family life.

On Monday, then, in the gaps between school runs and riding and skittles, I cooked our Sunday roast, served it up in pans and roasting dishes, and we sat and ate together. Suddenly, my husband spoke: “I think this is the best roast dinner you’ve ever cooked” and my daughter chimed in “It’s the best roast dinner I’ve ever eaten.” My son agreed with them, nodding with his mouth full and helping himself to another roast potato. I laughed. And then I smiled, in sheer pleasure.

I don’t know if it was the best roast dinner ever. I suspect there have been better ones…I do know that this is what makes a family – sharing the rituals, and the times when we do something a little unexpected. Sharing a meal together, enjoying the food and the company. Taking the extra potato.

Winter mud, spring rain
Outside our golden circle,
Inside is our home.

 

Toni at dVerse is asking for a haibun on the best meal we ever had. This is a bit of a cheat, but I’m trying to use this year’s haibuns as a journal, keeping it in the here and now. Like I say, I don’t know if it was the best meal ever, but we enjoyed it. I suspect this week’s haibuns will be about company more than menus…get over to dVerse and see if I’m right.