I awoke this morning with the smell of my Mother's chicken soup wafting over me. No, sadly my elderly mother had not snuck into my house in the middle of the night to prepare me a surprise feast, it was my subconcious reaction to the general feeling of unwellness (not a word, but the best way of explaining at the moment) which appears to be an early companion as sleep dissipates.
My childhood was filled with illness, I was a delicate little thing immunity wise, and my Mother's solution was soup to sooth my volatile stomach, when nothing else would stay down. As I grew it was the food I craved, and hence requested whenever my body or my spirit weakened.
Many a break up was discussed over soup with my wonderful Mother wiping my tears before they could drip from my chin into her glorious concoction. At other times she sat by my bed and patiently spooned the soup into my trembling mouth, pausing only to ring out the flannel lying across my fevered brow. When younger I believed my Mum added a touch of magic into the ingredients, along with a lot of love and some motherly concern. To be honest, I guess a part deep inside still believes, this would explain my need for it when anything goes wrong.
Now, some reading here would be dreaming up wonderful blends of herbs, vegetables, rice or pasta along with the chicken but you need to remember I was a terribly finical child who existed on Vegemite Saos and Milo in cold milk. Thus, my mother's chicken soup consisted of the following:
Chicken giblets sliced to broil for 2hours to create a stock base
1 onion finely diced
1.5 litres water
A dash of salt
Boil giblets for a couple of hours, adding onion 1 hour in. Remove giblets, strain, add dash of salt. Serve a bowl to ailing daughter.
It doesn't sound like anything much but it was delicious!
And it soothed away all my troubles, be they physical or emotional. Mother's Magical Medicinal Mix.
Mmmm, I can almost taste it now.
I won't even venture to mention my Grandmother's solution of chocolate Paddle Pops...