Image adapted from: Flickr /
Image adapted from: Flickr /

Spinach soup and Abbottabad


The day Osama bin Laden was killed my mother ate spinach soup with a fork. In Hungary, where I come from, we often prepare vegetables at home in a stew with soupy consistency, which is eaten with a spoon. That day, I was late for lunch to my mother's. There is always so much to do when we visit her in Budapest that meal times are the least of my considerations. As I ran towards the metro, I felt hassled. I collapsed on a seat and tried to catch my breath. The people sitting next to me were having a heated discussion on some recent event, but I did not pay them attention. There was too much noise. I was irritated with myself because I knew my mother would not start eating without me. I hurriedly walked from the station promising myself, as always, never to be late again.

When I entered the flat, still panting, my mother was sitting at the table in the dining room, quietly eating spinach soup with a fork. No reproaches, no questions, she looked at me calmly and continued eating. In the living room, the TV was blaring.

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Himal Southasian