02 October 2005

Childhood food memories

This is the first time I've been 'tagged' so, to play the game, here are some childhood food memories as shared by Pei Ji and Daffy and (sort of) Fel:

Food was a very big thing for me when I was a child and as a result I ended up a bit big myself. I was a very fat kid. One girl I hadn't seen since I was twelve recently wrote to me and asked me what I was like now. She said she remembered "a polite chubby kid with glasses". Thanks to a stupidly unhealthy crash diet at age fourteen when I lost 17kg in three months, the chubbiness has gone (as has most of the politeness to be honest, although the glasses remain on most days). You could therefore say that food and my childhood were inseperable because all I ever did was eat. Food related memories that spring immediately to mind are:

1) Vegetables. I hated them. My parents think I still do but I do eat my fair share of greens. I had broccoli and green beans with my supper tonight. Generally, I refused to eat anything I hadn't seen dance on Sesame Street and as it was only normally the tomatoes and carrots that got up and boogied, I ended up fairly unhealthy. The Cookie Monster's presence probably didn't help my cause much either.

2) Chocolate. My Mum never put chocolate in my brothers, sisters or my school lunches. All the other kids in our classes got to eat it and because we were the only Muslim kids at school we thought it was because of our religion that we weren't allowed chocs (just like how they had pork in their sandwiches and we didn't). It was only after being repeatedly told that "Christians have nothing to do with chocolate" that we realised we could actually eat it if we wanted.

3) Chilli. If we said a rude word my parents made us chew a fresh chilli. I did it once and have watched my mouth ever since.

4) Fish on Friday and Rice Pudding. At boarding school I got quite fond of the tradition of eating fish on Friday. In fact, I still try to have fish for Friday lunch even if it's only a tuna sandwich. My friend Jemima hated fish though and refused to sit next to anybody eating fish at the lunch table. Fridays were therefore a nightmare for her and I remember one time we teased her and put fish in her jacket pockets and her hair. Luckily, she had a sense of humour so it was ok, although she did threaten to cry if we didn't stop.

She got me back later by taking some of other food of mine later on. I was ill in bed for a few days and our tutor Miss Pinkney kindly gave her some get well sweets to pass to me. Jemima came in to my room and gave me the box but said sorry cos she'd already eaten half of them on the way back to our house.

Similarly, my friend Warren hated rice pudding and wouldn't go anywhere near the stuff. I, on the other hand, love it. He banned me from having any when he sat next to me at lunch so if I saw it on the menu I tried to sit somewhere else on the table so I could have some. Warren was ruthless with our other friend Gubs, who was trying to diet. If Gubs came to the table with potatoes on his plate, Warren would take them from him and eat them himself. He said he was only trying to help.

5) Mum's cooking rules ok. Everyone says their Mum's cooking is the best in the world but I have to say that actually, my Mum's really is the best. She cooks all sorts of things at home and I really miss it.

These are the things that come to mind right now. I feel like I've just eaten, which is bad because I'm about to go to bed. My waist better not have grown by the morning.


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