Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Chile Diary Chapter 10......March 20, 2010

A fish-bone in the throat

Yesterday marked one month of my stay to the day.

I landed in Chile on a Friday on the 19th of February. Yesterday was also a Friday. Bonus... Tintin had taken leave and we had lunch at SixBar, a restaurant specialising in Peruvian and Japanese cuisine. It’s close by so we walked down. It was a celebration of sorts. We had some roasted crunchy maize and salmon tempura while we waited for our order of camorone (shrimp) tempura for starters. Delicious! We walloped it down and waited patiently for the main course of roast pork accompanied by ‘terrine papa y chutney de mango.’ We had asked that the meat be well done so I enjoyed it. Two glasses of chilled ‘pina’ juice washed down the meal. Terrine papa is a dish made of slices of potato (papa) wrapped in a bacon rasher and baked. This is eaten with mango chutney. Now it was time for dessert. Tintin chose one that translated to ‘Volcano of chocolate’ but changed the order when he was informed it would take fifteen minutes and opted for the trilogy of chocolate. What no one told him was that this would take twenty minutes! I’m not very keen on desserts and asked for a plate of cut fresh fruits. Boy! That was a meal.

The cab we had called for was waiting and we drove to Lider, a huge market which would be called a mall in India. It’s a lot like Spencer’s in Gurgaon, only three times the size. The only reason we were here was to get the length of my track pants altered. Once that was done, we had nothing but window shopping to do, which I couldn’t do much of as my back and legs didn’t hold on and I needed to sit. So I leant against a pillar and waited for Tintin to finish his window-shopping. Then it was back to the guesthouse for us. I was tired and lay down. Tintin promptly went off to sleep. The rest of the evening went off dozing and waking, till I got quite fed-up with staring at the ceiling and walls.

It was 10.30 pm when Manu walked in with dinner. We ate and talked a bit. At about midnight, she felt like eating ice-cream. Since it meant a long walk to 5 Norte, I was obviously not included in the midnight jaunt. But I was too nervous to be left alone at the guesthouse for two reasons; First, I wasn’t sleepy and with no TV or internet, I had nothing to take my mind off tremors and quakes. The second, the other mom wasn’t in and I didn’t want to be alone. This didn’t please Manu evidently, so I suggested they drop me at Manchester, where I could drink some coffee, plug-in the laptop and check my mail and chat with some friends. This didn’t please Tintin.

Anyway, with no definite alternative being decided on, I was hovering in the living room wondering how I was going to deal with the situation, when both of them herded me out of the house, I tagged along. To cut a long story short, I couldn’t walk the distance. Manu was upset and made no bones about it through a silent protest. She walked yards ahead of us like a thunder-cloud waiting to burst. Tintin had to bear the brunt indirectly while I felt as unwanted as a fish-bone in the throat. I don’t blame either for feeling the way they felt about me at that moment. The day ended on a sour note and it doesn’t make me happy, because I know it was I and not my son who was the irritant.


  1. The food sounds amazing - I myself love dessert and would have gone with the chocolate. I can sympathize with how you feel as I have trouble walking very far, it is sad that your daughter-in-law has no patience at times with your physical abilities.

  2. Chocolate's always the winner! You know Marlene, my daughter-in-law is young and as a newly married girl she must have expectations and hopes that are different from mine. I can understand her frustrations, and I'm sure, given time and with patient and nurturing love, she will grow up and become more understanding and tolerant of the physical limitations that occur with older people due to disease or age. I'm glad she expresses it rather than keep it smouldering...there's hope..:)