“Sometimes your only available transportation is a leap of faith.” Margaret Shepard
Alice stared at the buffet-laden table. The sausage rolls, the pork pies, the little triangular sandwiches with their crusts cut off, the cheese and pineapple cubes speared on cocktail sticks, the trifle, the jelly, the little clementine segments floating in their sweet, sticky juice, the bottles of cherryade and ginger beer, they grew in size, reached for the ceiling, loomed towards her menacingly. ‘No, no, invitingly’, she forced herself to think up a better word than the one that towered in her mind.
She gulped, panic turning her throat to sandpaper, gluing her tongue to the roof of her mouth. She took slow, steady breaths, just as she had been taught.
“Darling, isn’t this wonderful? All your favourite foods from ‘The Best Christmas Ever!’ Do you remember? We struggled so hard that year, what with your dad on 3 day weeks and no money to speak of, but it was the best one ever, for you. We were so happy!”
“Thanks, Mum,” Alice whispered, clenching her fists, magicking up a smile. Mum was doing her best, they were all doing their best.
She reached for a cheese and pineapple morsel, closed her eyes and took a tiny bite, the cheese clagging itself to the roof of her mouth, the pineapple tang making the back of her jaw tingle with the sweet, acidic bite she had barely thought of in years.
Suddenly, she was transported back in time to the 1970s, to laughter, to fun, to warmth and comfort, to when food was a joy and not a monster to be battled with every day.
‘One bite at a time,’ she thought, her therapist’s words echoing in her ears. ‘One bite at a time.’
And this time, thanks to Michael for inspiring me to take part in this prompt, hosted by Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie. The initial prompt is the quote above, this week form Margaret Shepard, and then to provide more inspiration, we have a little tableaux of beautiful images to ponder as well.
I hope you enjoy my piece and do head on over to Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie to read other contributions and… take part!