When life gives you lemons…

By Vanessa Perera

After spending the entire day sorting out bills, the dining table was filled with receipts, notes, and scraps of paper. Jane was now obsessively polishing the silverware to impress her mother-in-law who would visit for tea that evening.

Jane never knew how to be the perfect daughter-in-law, but she tried. Today she decided to impress her mother-in-law by baking a lemon cake for tea—a recipe she found online.

The cake took an awfully long time to bake, so Jane increased the gas mark with hopes of baking the cake quickly. She then cleared up the dining table and began to vacuum the living room to welcome a rather sceptical guest.

When she was almost finishing up, she heard her husband’s car pull up in the driveway, and she ran outside to welcome him, with messy hair and an apron covered with flour and lemon curd stains.

Jane sent flying kisses to her husband from the door, acting silly in the way she always did, but today he didn’t seem excited to see her. Maybe it was a bad day at work Jane thought, so she ran towards the car, opened the door, and hugged John tight enough to make him forget his troubles.

It was then that Jane noticed a handbag at the backseat of the car, and right behind the driver’s seat sat John’s mother, Jacintha.

The dark tinted windows of the car made it difficult to see anyone, and Jane was quite embarrassed that her mother-in-law witnessed her childish display of affection.

‘Hello mother, what a surprise. I thought you would be driving yourself here today,’ said Jane nervously.

‘Change of plans,’ Jacintha muttered as she got out of the car and smoothed the wrinkles on her skirt.

‘Some warning would’ve been great, darling’, whispered Jane to her husband, and they both laughed.

As Jacintha walked into her son’s house, she smelled something burning and hurried into the kitchen to check on what Jane had messed up this time.

By the time Jane and John ran into the kitchen it was too late. A big cloud of smoke covered Jacintha’s face as she yelled, ‘What on earth is going on here?’

John burst out laughing and his mother’s face turned red with rage.

‘Take me back home this instant John, I don’t want to stay another minute here,’ Jacintha yelled as she walked out of the house and into the car.

Twenty minutes later when John was back home, he walked into the kitchen to help Jane scrape out the blackened cake tray.

‘Ah, home grown lemons!’ John said, as he spotted them beside the kitchen sink.  He took out a bottle of tequila from the liquor cabinet and turned to his wife, ‘tough day, love? How about a drink?’





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