Last night, I made the most fabulous pork chops. I bought a giant package of lean boneless pork loin, dredged it in seasoned flour and browned it beautifully before simmering it for an hour in the oven in a sweet Japanese sauce my momma often makes for chicken. The Electrician was here, so I made lots of extra rice, and two fresh salads for dinner. I make the salads separately because he doesn’t like avocado.
He didn’t say much about the meal, in English. He did, however, make a multitude of happy sighs while grinning and looking at me with goo-goo eyes. His bites were also bigger and executed with more gusto than usual. Great success on the dinner front. I had to immediately package up the leftovers so I wasn’t tempted to load my plate up with round two.
Today, as many of you might have noticed, was Tuesday. The sad thing about Tuesdays is that it’s by far my longest teaching day, and I also give extra help after school. Extra help went until shortly before 5 today, so it was a draining run indeed.
Fortunately, my pork chops were waiting in my lunch bag, ready to be the highlight of my day and the fuel that propelled me to the painfully distant finish line. I salivated just thinking about them on the ride to school. I stumbled over my words teaching my grade nine novel study. While several students wrote into the noon hour to finish their Othello quizzes, I was my normal (well, as normal as I get) encouraging self on the outside, but inside I was pacing and dreaming of my mid-day entree.
When I finally arrived in the lunch room, I pulled the container out of my ever-elegant lunch tote, popped the lid and gasped in horror. There were no pork chops in my dish. What lay before me was a disappointing stretch of plain rice, the extra rice that wasn’t lucky enough to snuggle up with pork tenderloin. There were four containers of leftover pork and rice and one of plain rice in the fridge: I lost in spite of the promising odds. Such a thing could really only have happened on a Tuesday. I had nothing to put on that sad dish of rice: no butter, no sweet and sour sauce. It was only flavoured by the salt of my tears.
If you’d tasted those pork chops, you’d understand my unbridled melodrama.
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