WORDS to EAT by: Surprise!!!!!!!

We need to tell these management folks that meetings need to be brief.

It is Monday morning. My to-do list is so long and includes things from last week. So, this meeting that started at 8am and is still going at 11am is annoying me. Stop talking so much I think to myself. There seems to be a contest to see who can talk too much and not actually say anything.

A contest that does not include me.

I am more of an observer than a talker. At work. In all aspects of my life.

This job takes up so much of a life. What I do, where I work does not matter. What matters is that I have a uniform consisting of white dress shirts, black, navy blue and grey suits, solid-coloured ties and black or brown dress shoes. I attend meetings, I write reports, I make presentations. I arrive early and close late. Sometimes, I meet friends after work for drinks and music. Jazz is my thing. Home is a too large apartment in a trendy part of town that is more a place to sleep than a cozy haven.

Meeting done and I am finally at my desk. My phone has several missed calls from an unfamiliar number. I return the call as I turn my laptop on.

‘Yes’, I say when the call connects.

‘Hi’

I recognize her voice. I have not heard it in months, but I know this voice.

‘Hi’ I say.

‘I am sorry I never returned your calls and messages. I just needed time….’

I am quiet.

This is an awkward phone call. The type that happens when a woman you thought was your forever and a day lover ghosts you. After 11 months together, she disappeared. She stopped taking my calls, text messages went unanswered, her parents told me to stop coming around and she would see me when she was ready.

I thought about everything and could not find a reason we went from joined at the hip to nothing. I moved on. I had no choice. Buried myself in work and tried not to think about her.

‘I need to see you. I have a lot to tell you. I need to explain….’

I want to get off the phone. However, I am curious. That and the fact that I am angry, and I miss her.

‘I only have time over the weekend. Let us get this over with’

‘Does Sunday work for you?’

‘Come to my place’

I hang up.

I mentioned I am not much of a talker.


 

Sunday afternoon.

She sent a message with 2pm as her arrival time.

I have made some sticky succulent cola wings. She loves them.

The doorbell rings.

I open the door.

She is even more beautiful than I remember.

She smiles and says ‘Hi’

I feel like I have been punched in the gut. I want to reach for her, I want to shut the door and send her away. Drama and emotional rollercoaster rides are not my thing.

‘Can we come in?’

I step aside. And register two things. She said we. And she is carrying something.

A car seat thing.

I am confused. We. Car seat?

I look up at her.

She smiles and her eyes have unshed tears in them.

‘Happy Father’s Day. We made a baby’

 

Cola Wings

You will need:
• 1kg chicken wings – separated
• Vegetable or canola oil
• 1 small onion – diced
• 4 cloves garlic – minced
• 1 tablespoon ginger – grated
• 1 can cola
• tablespoons light soy sauce
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice
• 1 tablespoon rice/white/apple cider vinegar
• 1 habanero pepper – finely diced
• Salt to taste
• Cilantro – about a ¼ cup
• African Basil – 5 large leaves (scent leaf)

 

How to:
• Wash chicken wings and pat dry with kitchen towel
• Use a pot or pan wide enough to have chicken wings in a single layer
• Add enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan and heat
• Add the onions, garlic and ginger to the pan and stir for 1 minute on medium heat
• Add the chicken wings and stir. Cook for about 5 minutes so the wings just begin to brown.
• Add the coca cola, soy sauce, lemon juice, vinegar and habanero pepper and stir
• Bring to a boil, lower heat, and cover pot
• Let simmer and cook for about 10 – 15 minutes.
• Stir and coat the wings well. The sauce should be thick, and syrupy at this point. Cook longer if necessary
• Taste and add salt and pepper
• Add the cilantro and basil. Use more or less based on what you prefer and stir

Serve the wings covered with any leftover sauce in the pan and enjoy!!!

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