I remember, as a kid, my Mom used to get invited to weddings a lot. At least that's the way it seemed. Anyway, if you've ever attended a Chinese Wedding Dinner, you'll know that it's quite a grand culinary affair - a sumptuous 8-course dinner. You'll also know that every one such dinner starts off with a delicious starter called "The 4 Seasons" which features a 4 delightful little dishes in one presentation.
Mom always used to pick out her share of either a Meatball or a Spring Roll. She'd then wrap it nicely in a paper napkin and stuff it in her handbag. And when she came home later that night, her doe-eyed little boy would greet that neat little "package" with so much enchantment you'd think he'd found a diamond of something.
Yeah, I was a dumb kid. :) But I got even dumber as I grew up.
In my early teens, I couldn't help but feel a little embarrassed that Mom took-away food from a wedding dinner. I mean, this is the kind of faux pas for which the etiquette police would arrest you and throw you in jail. The kind of thing they'd do at a wedding in the village. At an age when I had learnt the tenets of social graces (that, and pretentious words like "etiquette" and "faux pas"), I was no longer enamoured by a Springroll in Mom's purse.
It's taken awhile, but I finally get it.
Yesterday, the aftertaste of all those Meatballs and Springrolls I had eaten as a kid came back to me. It's so clear. Mothers are exempt from the silly inconveniences of etiquette. Mothers are allowed to bend the rules a little, when it comes to their kids. Only because love will make you do the silliest things. Silly things, like stuffing a Meatball in your purse. Silly things that Mom did for me. And silly things that Mae does for Jesse.
So, to Mom, to Mae and to all you mothers out there, Happy Mothers' Day. I know I'm a little late on this one and it probably sounds silly to be posting this after the fact, but you know what they say - Love makes you do the silliest things. ;)