Yog loves everything that is even in the remotest ways connected to food. Most of his waking time, he spends in the kitchen sitting beside his grandmother or me, watching us cook. When we remove him from the cooking scene for fear of he getting hurt, he busies himself with the pots, pans, grinder jars, ladles, boxes, anything that makes sounds and is associated with food.
Our best time together, during the day, is when I sit down for my meal. Usually he has already finished his food, but his curiosity on whats on my plate, always pull him to me. I sit on the chair, and he sits on my lap, facing the dining table. He then digs into my food with his chubby hands. My lap provides the ideal height for him to reach my plate along with just the right proximity to me.
Digging into my food provides him a beautiful sensory experience, something that we probably get only when we taste the rarest of wines. He starts with rubbing the soft rice in between his fingers to feel it. Once that sense is satisfied, he put the little morsel into his mouth for the second sensory organ to get its share. His eyes roll back a little as the rice melts in his mouth and the juice flows down his throat. This is just plain rice without any top ups but he savors it like it is best thing that he has ever tasted.
Two or three morsels down, and his appetite is done. He then picks some more morsels and puts it into my mouth. Most of you won’t believe it, but I cross my heart and say that the morsels that Yog puts in my mouth are one of the most delicious foods that I have ever tasted. Just a few rice grains, without any top ups, served with tiny fingers, half of them dropping on the way to my mouth are much more than just food for me. As I feel his soft fingers reaching into my mouth, sometimes tears well up in my eyes.
His hand often misses the target of my mouth, and he ends up smearing the food on my cheeks or nose. He then turns back to look up at my face and admire his art work. He grins from ear to ear upon the fact that now my face resembles his.
Before this time, I have never been a foodie in my life. I have always viewed food as something to be consumed to keep the body running. I never knew, the simplest of food can provide so much pleasure and serve as a connection between people. I know these days will pass when Yog will outgrow my lap and give me food with his tiny fingers. But then somewhere in my heart, I look forward to the days, when I am old, lying on bed and Yog, all big and strong, comes my bed, to give me my last few morsels of food.