You may be wondering how those weekly family dinners have been going. As you may recall, my mother-in-law prepared the first. Last week it was my turn and we had nabe (hot pot). While fishing vegetables and tofu out of the broth, my husband said, in Japanese, that next week would be my mother-in-law’s turn (of course), but when it came around to us again we could make octopus fritters or fondue.
So. Tuesday night I was looking forward to not having to cook, and to my mother-in-law’s fabulous feast. Since she has so much time on her hands, when she cooks for us, she spends the whole day at it. Nevertheless, when I got home from work, she didn’t seem to be cooking. There was no scent of dashi or fish wafting over from her quarters. I decided to make a run to the store for milk. When I returned, she popped over and said, “Oh, you’re back.” I figured that was her cue to start bringing over her trays of food. But nothing happened. By this time, we were all getting pretty hungry. Finally, Yoshi sent Jio over to see if there was anything he could help with.
Jio came back a minute later and said that Obaachan hadn’t prepared anything. She thought we were making fondue.
I sometimes wonder where the miscommunication occurs. We use three languages in our household, so it’s easy to make mistakes once in awhile, but I clearly recall my husband saying in Japanese to his mother that it was her turn to cook this week.
We all wound up going out for sushi.