My friend Leigh and I had lunch at Masseto, a swanky and chi-chi resto in Salcedo Village. As what happens with most long-time friends who haven’t seen each other for months, such an occasion is marked with good food, much laughter and heartfelt sharing of significant life moments that happened in between meet-ups.
She has been going through some emotional stuff recently, so by the time dessert came along we were deep in conversation, occasionally taking a break by asking for more water or, when the waiter handed us the dessert menu, ordering Salted Caramel Ice Cream and asking that it be split in two, since we were both quite full.
When dessert came, she was struggling to keep her emotions in check. She had already taken off her glasses and, at one point, covered her face with her hands. Still, she bravely continued her narration, while picking up her dessert spoon. I also picked up mine. She was talking while she scooped a bit of ice cream, and placed it in her mouth. I absentmindedly mirrored her movements, all the while concentrating on her story.
We both tasted the ice cream at the same time.
Suddenly everything stopped. We both died as the ice cream melted in our mouths.
“Oh my god, Leigh!”
“Ay putang ina. Wow!”
“Shet Leigh, ang saraaaaaaap!”
And right there and then, we forgot all about her situation. We were oohing and ah-ing and marveling at the thick texture, the way the ice cream had already melted on the sides, and how the sugary residue clung to the back of the spoon.
Great food can be that powerful. Even for just a few seconds, all is well in this world.