Mom and aunties scanning the restaurant's four menu offerings.

Mom and aunties scanning the restaurant's four menu offerings.

January is a month of birthdays for family and friends. I have at least five friends celebrating it this month. There’s one auntie and a cousin. Of course there’s yours truly too. It is like extending the Christmas feast for a month, the way things are going.

On the 15th was Auntie Dinah’s birthday. It has been sixteen (16) years she was home from Madrid and since she flew in on 19 December, was eagerly sampling native fare. Where would it be the place to take her than in a restaurant with native cuisine? Off we went to San Fernando and had a sumptuous lunch. Like any Saplala dine-out, we had the waiters scurrying to and from our table with requests for extra knives, saucers, condiments and whatever else made a meal more enjoyable.

True to form, as soon as we started on the dessert, they started planning for the next meal, the next day’s breakfast and eating out when my Auntie Vicky and Uncle Bert would fly in this month. Why true to form? That’s because planning the next meal and the next day’s meals is something we seem to do as a family when we get together. Not that it takes a reunion to accomplish that. My late grandmother used to start dinner cooking as soon as lunch was done.

Of course that was meant to be economical – not to waste the heat from the firewood while it was going. But in this age of automatic gas ranges and microwave ovens? Well, it is probably our way of keeping Lola’s traditions alive and of course, to better enjoy our time together.

Related posts: