, , , , , ,

Let me tell you about the chicken that got away before… Well, I mustn’t reveal the endings of tales and also stop this habit of beginning tales right in the middle, or towards the tail end. It’s a habit of mine when writing fiction and has apparently also seeped into blogs.

Today we were at the hospital, it being the last day of treatment for the L&M in his fight against the Big C. It has been two years now of trips to the doctors and hospitals with no hospitalisation itself needed. Early detection and his otherwise excellent health helped and he is now in total remission. From the very first day right to the present one, other than a few days of fatigue here and there, he has been his usual active busybody self throughout.

So there we were at the hospital today, excited at the thought that we needn’t make this trip anymore from the next month onwards and hopefully never again. The doctor as was usual arrived pretty late. When it was finally our turn we waited eagerly for him to say it in so many words. And he did. Yes, the treatment is over and done. Only routine visits from now on.

Yay, to that.

On the way out (and this is where the chicken steps in, not physically of course, you have to imagine the whole thing) we decided to stop for lunch. It was already late. No point waiting to reach home. I had begun feeling faint with no nourishment partaken for hours and hours. Breakfast had been ages back. We stopped at the restaurant in the hospital complex grandly titled Spice Route (I think it was ‘route’, but it could be ‘road’ for all I know).

There were quite a few items on the menu and we chose to have Chicken Fried Rice. One plate, shared between the two of us (I am a poor eater and need only one tablespoon of rice) with some accompaniments. As soon as it arrived, I started wolfing down the one and a half tablespoon (the half spoon extra was special concession for the intense hunger I felt) of chicken fried rice that I served myself, when I heard the L&M remark:

“It is called chicken fried rice, but no chicken seems to have come anywhere close to it!”

He was referring to the fact that no chicken pieces could be found, not enough anyway to be visible to the naked eye. Hungry that I was, I hadn’t stopped to notice such minor details. At his words though, I looked at the half tablespoon of rice still left in my plate and noticing the prominent chunks of scrambled eggs replied,

“Lots of egg in it though…!”

“Yeah,” the L&M replied straight-faced, “The chicken must have come running, laid the eggs and quickly run away before they could catch and cook it!”

I admit I laughed trying not to spew the last teaspoon of rice I had spooned into my mouth just then. This man and his jokes! 😉

© Shail Mohan 2023