So, where were we? Right. The salmon steaks were sizzling away and I was gagging on the smell.
Fortunately the gagging stopped pretty quickly. I guess my brain got used to the odor and tuned it out. Steaks cooked, Raul transferred them on to plates and put a jar of tartar sauce on the table (because we all know the real reason fish exists as food is for tartar sauce – or wasabe for sushi).
"Careful," he said (in Spanish, of course), "there are a lot of bones."
Damn! So much for wolfing it down in three unchewed bites! (Or would that be sharking it down since it’s fish?)
Tentatively, I peeled off a piece of salmon, dipped it in the tartar sauce and popped it into my mouth. As my tongue searched for bones, I noticed a distinct lack of nausea-inducing fish oils. I tried another piece, this time without tartar sauce. Hey, not bad!
Small piece by small piece I ate the whole steak, taking an unheard-of fifteen minutes to eat it. As a child, a neighbour had died on a chicken bone and small bones in food have freaked me out a bit ever since. I then realized I was doing something my naturopath had tried to get me to understand years ago. I was using food to live in the moment. My thoughts were wholly on the salmon. I was not just eating it, but savouring the texture, the way each flake melted off the morsel in my mouth, sometimes to reveal a thin sharp spine, other times to reveal just more salmon.
I’ve purposefully focused on living in the moment before but rarely do I come to it spontaneously. I was therefore totally thrilled that I was doing so and that it had been something I’d normally reject out of hand that got me there.
- If you’re not open to trying (and retrying) experiences, you’ll miss out on a lot of great moments.
- Sometimes understanding comes sneaking up on you, revealing itself when you least expect it.
P.S. It took a day and a half to clear the apartment of the smell of fish.