It took me a little while to find the right picture for this month’s fiction prompt, but when I found it I immediately started writing the piece in my head – a sure sign that I’d found the right image.
It’s by Sabrine (@mademoiselle.lys), who I’ve been hugely inspired by on Instagram. Her love of light, soft tones and sense of simplicity is basically everything I love aesthetically. This picture, a stack of pancakes on a bed, beautifully styled just pulled me in.
I love that Sabrine uses food in her imagery, always in a simple yet satisfying way.
Unlike my other monthly mindscapes, this micro-fiction piece is entirely based on true events. I’m just embellishing a little for fun. Anyway, onto the main course…
Flicking through Instagram stories she watches her favourite blogger pouring maple syrup over a tall stack of pancakes. Her mouth watered instantly. When was the last time I had pancakes? She thought to herself. If you have to think about it, it’s been too long – she rationalised.
Crawling into bed with her boyfriend she whispered, “Do you fancy going out for breakfast tomorrow?” He smiled and said “That sounds like an excellent idea”. They curled up together and fell asleep with limbs entwined.
As the sunlight woke them, she felt her stomach growl. It wasn’t just a physical hunger though, it was an emotional hunger.
She knew the fluffy battered pancakes would fill her soul with happiness – she grinned at the prospect.
The discussion about where to go for breakfast was a short one, they knew where they were going to go… where they always go – they do the best pancakes there. She told him about her craving and why it surfaced, “Wow, I guess they don’t call them influencers for nothing do they?” he chuckled.
Sitting at the table she ordered a tall glass of juice, coffee, a small stack of pancakes with bacon on the side. He ordered his usual smoothie and full English.
They talked about the fact they hadn’t been out to eat together in a while, their plans for the rest of the weekend and how terrible the film they watched the night before was.
Then the waiter walked over carrying their food. Sat in front of her, she took the glorious sight in.
The pancakes themselves were thick, three of them stacked on top of each other. Maple syrup was draped over them, like a silk night dress. A careful cube of salted butter crowned the stack, while crispy bacon rashers waited patiently at the side.
He looked at her from across the table and smiled, “I’m not sure I’ve ever seen you this smiley” he said, quietly laughing to himself. She laughed in return and shook her head – he had no idea.
Because, you see this wasn’t just about the pancakes.
It wasn’t just about satisfying a physical and emotional hunger. It wasn’t just about finding joy in syrup soaked cakes.
It was about how easy it was to make the decision to go out and get pancakes for breakfast. It was about not having to fight a mental illness for her right to eat anymore. It was about living somewhere that allowed her to spontaneously stroll into town and get pancakes.
And, it was about him. Living with him, laughing with him, eating with him.
“Yeah” she said, “I have a lot to smile about.”
Just writing this has made me crave pancakes all over again.
In all seriousness, I think this – finding joy in a plate of food and all it represents is what life is all about. These small, seemingly insignificant moments can crystallise what it means to be happy.
We just need to take the time to pause and notice them when they happen.
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