Salmon: Self-caught and Cooked

1 Nov

In the opening scene of The Setting Sun, Kazuko describes her mother’s strange way of eating soup.  For Kazuko, this meal is memorable because it’s defines her family’s decadent decline.  In other words, this meal will always invoke memories of her family’s “fall” in society.  Thus, Kazuko defines a memorable meal as any meal that can immediately be associated with a significant memory—good or bad.
A couple of years ago, I had the pleasure of visiting Alaska on a cruise with my family.  One of the highlights of our trip to Alaska was going salmon fishing.  Catching the salmon, reeling them in, and posing for a picture with my catch was an enjoyable experience in itself.  But the fact that we were able to have the salmon that we caught shipped home made the experience even more special.
One of my most memorable meals was eating the salmon that my family and I had caught and shipped home.  Dad grilled the salmon with some special herb rub that we bought in Alaska.  And of course, living in Hawaii, the herb-grilled salmon was complimented perfectly by a steaming bowl of rice.  While eating that delicious meal, it wasn’t hard to conjure up memories of our wonderful trip to Alaska.  But even to this day, whenever I reminisce about that meal, memories of my fun-filled trip to Alaska flood my mind.  Likewise, whenever I think about my trip to Alaska, I can’t help but recall that memorable meal of salmon and rice.  Just as the soup defines Kazuko’s family’s decadence, for me, the salmon and rice meal defines my family’s trip to Alaska.

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