Years ago, my beloved friend, CW, and I were sitting down to dinner.
We’d met not long before and were still very much in the ‘getting to know each other’ phase of our relationship.
Things were going very well. We were both quite fond of one another. Conversation was light, entertaining and quite enjoyable. We shared many things in common and were very much ‘on the same page’ when it came to most subjects.
One of the things we had in common was a love for Chinese food and this dinner featured several of our favourite dishes.
We were enjoying dessert. I began to tell her a story from my misspent youth. I looked down at my plate, marshaling my thoughts. When I looked up, judge my surprise when I saw my beloved CW sporting an orange smile.
She caught me in mid-sentence… which I suspect was her intention all along. I just sort of stared at her as she sat there, eyes twinkling, with her large orange peel grin.
For a moment or two, I didn’t know what to make of this turn of events. While CW had a wonderful sense of humour and could joke and kid around with the best of them, I had to confess that this little piece of schtick caught me unawares.
I burst out laughing. I couldn’t help myself. It was just so ridiculous… so hilariously stupid. How can you NOT love an orange smile, especially one sprung upon you so deftly as this one was upon me.
CW later confessed that the expression on my face when I first looked up caused her a bit of concern. Apparently, rather than registering disbelief, the old mug had a ‘this girl’s a loonie’ aspect to it. Fortunately, CW is a bit of a loonie but in the nicest possible way.
I’m not sure if I’ve ever told her this but, to me, Chinese food is now inexorably linked with the image of that orange smile … so much so that I have been known to chuckle in the middle of having a spring roll or hot and sour soup.
When asked “what’s so flippin’ funny?” I can only shrug and shake my head.
“You had to be there,” I say, sheepishly.