Finish the Sentence Friday … I tried to Cook …

So I was a bit smug with myself when I took Home Economics (old english Cooking Class) Higher Grade in High School.  I don’t know what the American equivalent would be, but in the British Educational System it would be a bit like taking Home Economics to A Levels (I think!).  You know the class, you don’t only learn how to have a deep residing fear of choux pastry for the rest of your natural life but you also learn about the bugs that live in kitchen cloths, on chopping boards and that lovely bacterium that loiters on chicken skin … oh yes, I had mad skills and knowledge people!  It was one of those subjects that spoke to my ever increasing “Useless Shit File” and I thought it would transform me into a Domestic Goddess … um er … wrong … anyho!

So armed with my Higher Grade knowledge I headed off into life … smugly … but I lived at home didn’t I, and my mother who is a very good cook, would effortlessly produce an evening meal every day at precisely 6pm for her working family, didn’t she?

Then I went to live and work overseas, (by now I am 23 grand old years old) and soon enough we got a place of our own and we played house … which skidded to an abrupt halt the first evening I had to make dinner.  Didn’t it?  I remember it vividly.  I needed to make rice.  It sounds simple enough but I stood in my rented kitchen and panic bubbled up from my domestic bone (which I am still trying to find!) … HOW ON EARTH DO YOU MAKE RICE???  I revert in desperation to reading the instructions on the side of the plastic packet … nothing!  I knew academically how to make rice:  pot, water, rice, salt, heat … but how much water, how much rice, how long did I cook it for, is it rice in with cold water or add the rice when the water is boiling?  The absolute panic!  (Now remember, this was a time before the internet and Google and my trusty iPad – yes, there was such a time)  Oh BLEEP, I had to phone my mother!  Money was tight and phone calls from the UK to South Africa were reserved for Birthdays and bleeding from an artery and now how to cook rice!  Did my mother laugh!  I was horrified!  I took Home Economics Higher Grade for heaven’s sakes, how can this be happening to me!  I know the name of that bacterium that loiters on chicken skin!  Anyway, after a rough “How to make rice” lesson on the phone from 5000 miles away, I slowly headed back to the kitchen.  In the end it wasn’t so bad … but Paul tells the story slightly differently when he regales it (regularly) and says that I made enough rice for the whole neighbourhood.  It’s not funny!

But I do look back on that moment fondly … because it was the exact moment when I realized just how much my mother had done for me and how little I knew!

That night I tried to cook rice … I’m only ever so slightly better at it now (over 15 years later) … we go through a lot of rice people!

Love you all madly!
Warm regards …   
Collette in Cape Town

 

10 comments:

Lisa Newlin said...

Love this! It was funny but at the end it made me want to cry a little because you appreciate your mom. How sweet.

And you should tell your hubby that this rice incident was just one of many examples of you being charitable and sharing with others.

Zenith Thinking said...

Thank you Lisa ... it was a big moment! Mad Skills and All!

Warm regards
Collette in Cape Town

Janine Huldie said...

Lol, this made me think of an old I Love Lucy episode, where the women and men switched roles for a day. Rice was made as a side dish and boy did they cook a lot of rice, so much that it was all over the kitchen, lol!! We all go through learning curves though and I know what you mean my mom did tons for me, too!! Thanks for linking up with us!!! :)

Considerer said...

Heheh I did that once, the first time I cooked for just my Mum and I having come from a daysworth of cooking for 24 kids at the nursery where I worked. I did enough rice for most of those 24 kids and FAR too much for the two of us.

Kate Hall said...

I can't cook rice without a recipe. Heck, I panic when they don't tell you how long to cook pasta and that pretty easy. I have to keep throwing it at the ceiling to see if it sticks.

in the coop said...

I always laughed when people would say they use a rice cooker. How hard is it to buy Minute Rice and boil it for a few minutes? I had no idea (for years!) that rice came in plastic bags with no instructions and take a whole lot longer to cook than a few minutes.
I'm waiting patiently for the day that my daughter appreciates me more. I certainly hit that point with my own mom.

Chris Coyle said...

I seem to have this issue with pasta. I know how to measure rice per person, but when it comes to pasta, I always manage to make enough for AT LEAST three extra people. I suppose that's better than not having enough, but you would think I would figure it out at some point. I makes me feel SLIGHTLY better that my sister does the same thing. :)

Kristi Campbell said...

I just get the microwave rice in a bag. 90 seconds and BOOM! It's really yummy, too.
So funny :)

Stephanie Sprenger said...

Oh, that *is* funny! I love it! I have called my own mother a hundred times over the years to ask for recipe clarification. And now, thank God, the internet is handy for those common sense questions I seem to still have...thanks for linking up with us this week!

Rich Rumple said...

After years in the military, I found myself having to make coffee one morning. Having never done so before, I filled up the coffee area with fresh grounds. Needless to say, it was somewhat stout. I drank it, thinking, "This tastes a little strong." When the others came in, my mistake was quickly discovered as plastic spoons started breaking when stirring in creamer and sugar. lol Great post!

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