grandpa food loss

What is lost is never forgotten

I lost my grandpa last week just before I boarded my flight from Beijing to the UK.

A week before Easter, I received a text just from my mum saying that my grandpa passed away seconds before I board my flight from Beijing to Manchester. Grandpa played an important role in my childhood as he was the person who always ordered the fancy orange juice from the menu specially for me. He was also the one who brought me to all the theme parks and anywhere that would put a smile on my face. I was his eldest grandson and to know that I couldn’t pay my last respect or support my dad during such time was just awful. I did want to take another flight but being an entrepreneur at my stage, I was a little tight financially and had urgent matters to attend to in the UK. Sat on my seat, I asked my mum “mama, what should I do?”. Mum replied “son, your grandpa is up there looking after you and always remember he is the proudest grandpa! Your sisters and I will look after your dad.”

Photo by Gunawan Kartapranata / CC BY-SA 4.0

Food is memory, food is love.

I grieved differently and it took me nearly a week to pen down my thoughts. Everyone has their own ways to cope with the loss of someone. For me, food gave me the sweetest memories I had with my grandpa. I was served a piece of matcha layer cake as dessert for my in-flight meal. I was almost in tears because grandpa never fails to buy me the best layer cakes in Penang whenever I visit him. It’s neither the cheapest nor the easiest artisan layer cakes to get hold of. I remember how he would chase the auntie that sells the layer cakes from across the streets – hoping she still has enough for his favourite grandson to bring home.

It’s amazing how I could remember the scent of the surrounding, the sound, the heat (Malaysia is warm and humid 24/7), and the taste of the layer cake in my mouth. In that memory, I see my grandpa smiling so happily at me. :’)

Do you remember your loved ones through food?