Chocolate and fish
Chocolate and fish philippines stories
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y“..there interposed a fly”
Autoplay OFF  •  4 months ago
Very vivid memory of a morning long ago. Champorado and tuyo (chocolate porridge-thing and dried fish). I think it was the first time I figured out that things weren't all black and white or something - -maybe? It stood out to me, I guess.

Chocolate and fish

Today would be the most amazing, fantastic, gob stopping, awe-striking, undoubtedly splendid, spectacular day. Of that, I was sure.

Because today, on the table, at almost 5am, just before the sun wakes up, there's champorado on our table.

I love mornings because they're cold. You don't get cold that much around here, but early, early mornings, are always cold. As cold as it gets. And champorado's sweet and warm and amazing, fantastic, gob stopping, awe-striking, undoubtedly, splendid.

My feet don't touch the stone floor, so they're in the inbetween and my chest just barely reaches the top of the table as I sit and i'm in the inbetween, but I can see steam rising from the smell of chocolate and sweet milk, sweeter than normal milk, more like honey milk.

And there is a glass of water over there. I'll have to kneel to reach it but this chair has hidden nails in the cushion if you press down too hard and I don't want to get pricked, like the story of the princess and the wheel. I don't want to sleep, not now.

I haven't touched it yet because it smells good, like chocolate, and we don't get chocolate, not the ones in the shiny wrappers that call to you and say, "come! See what's inside!" Not them because they're from other places and they cost too much, up on the shelves of the white-walled stores.

Champorado's made with the chocolate in glass, the one that's a powder. The one that if you try to eat it like that, it makes you cough. Not good. But by some magic, like the stories of fairies that only come out in the spring, (they won't be here because we don't have any spring), mama's made it amazing, fantastic, gob stopping, awe-striking, undoubtedly, splendid.

much more than the fairies could. Mama's slippers like to shout to the world "we're here and we're coming closer and closer!" And when she comes in through the doorway, faint light fleets through her eyes and the sea comes with her stride.

I hold my spoon and the cold comes with it. I need to show that i'm awake. But then the fairy puts down a plate from the sea on the table, in front of the water, but closer to me.

Fish? Dried fish? Their eyes popped out, their skin more salt that anything else. They look so wrong beside the bowl of chocolate-honey-milk-good. Not good. There are two kinds of oceans: the kind in the white sand-sun-push-pull-call, good, and the kind in the rot-plastic-slish-slosh-dark, bad.

Her voice is still sleeping, but mama says "try it, you'll like it. Don't worry about bones, you can eat them, they'e tiny.” About bones? Eat bones! Eat heads and tails and spines! The balance of morning is shattered by this - and I kneel up and wince - there's a pin slightly jabbed into my knee - -shift my weight, there's no blood -- but there's salt. So much salt.

And just like that the whole table, the morning, the day, is decidedly not amazing, fantastic, gob stopping, awe-striking, undoubtedly, splendid. But mama's voice wakes up in a laugh. "Just try it, anak"

Her word is law in this realm, everyone knows that. So I do. Just a bit. Bit of dried-part-salt-i don't know which - with the chocolate-sweet-honey-milk-in my now-warm spoon. Just a bit. For the eyes and the lights and the fairies that aren't there.

And it's different, new, gob stopping, awe-striking, splendidly, decidedly in the inbetween.

-y

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