For the past several days it’s been obvious – the boys are missing a taste of home. They’ve been good eaters, overall. Preferring meats and fruits, eating vegetables when forced. Consistently turning down desserts, but never sodas. But just lately appetites have lagged, and hints have been dropped. American food is getting old.
I totally understand, but in reverse. Our stay in Colombia lasted seventeen days. At first the food was part of the adventure. Partway through the second week and I was craving familiar. And I remember this, too. The undeniable tie between comfort and food.
The differences are subtle. We ate pizza in Colombia, but it wasn’t as good as home. Jimmy and Felipe eat pizza in Minnesota, but it’s not the same. They’d rather not. And fruit is another dilemma altogether. Hands down fruit is better south of the equator than here in the frigid north. It might look like a peach or a plum, but our imported impostors don’t stand a chance.
So today was no school and four of us ate lunch at a Colombian restaurant found on the Internet. It hit the mark. For two of four. But it was the two who needed it most. Nils opted out and ate chicken nuggets and fries, which is Jimmy’s default when we eat American. Apparently kids’ meals are universal.
My satisfaction came from watching two new sons finding comfort in food. Everything Colombian. Even the sodas. And as they ate they remembered. Home. For a brief moment one boy was fighting tears, remembering. And Nils said, “This is good for them.” Yes.
They’ve been here for almost a month. Tomorrow. Four long weeks of unfamiliar. Everything new. Everything English. Snow and cold and gray. And February can make anyone restless. But today was good. It was just the right time for a taste of home.