I open the beautiful gift box, not knowing what to expect. My eyes light up in sheer delight and my face breaks into a big smile.
Inside the gift box are two smaller, rectangular boxes. One box is filled to the brim with a South Indian savoury called ‘mixture’ and the second box is filled with perfectly golden yellow boondi laddus, a sweet delicacy.
The gift is from the mother of one of my dear friends. My friend’s mom has made them for me. I feel so happy and touched to have received such a special gift. I thank my friend’s mom, and carefully store the boxes in the kitchen cupboard.
Boondi laddus were an integral part of my growing up years. My mom would always prepare this sweet during Deepavali, or to mark the various milestones in our lives. Memories of perfectly fried golden boondis come rushing into my mind now and make me nostalgic.
Later in the day, when I head to the kitchen to have my afternoon cup of coffee, I find my husband pottering around the kitchen. He grins and asks me where I have put away the ‘mixture’ and the boondi laddus.
I show him where they are. Soon, we tuck into yummy spoonfuls of crunchy ‘mixture’ with our coffee.
My husband then opens the laddu box. He asks me, “Do you want one?” I ask him if he would share a laddu with me? He agrees, albeit reluctantly, as he wants to eat one whole laddu all by himself. He takes one out and breaks it into two.
He asks me which piece I want. I say, “The bigger half.” He says, “How can there be a bigger half? You mean the bigger piece, don’t you?”
I have no time to answer, as I have already popped the laddu into my mouth, and relish the feeling of the crumbling boondi, the raisins and the cashewnuts. My husband’s expression mirrors mine. The laddus are simply delicious!
We look at each other and smile. “Another one?” we say in unison. We look like guilty children as we pop another one into our mouths!!