I read this book years ago and then watched the movie. I needed a third foreign language film to fulfill the Experience Passport task. I decided to see if I could find this movie and lucky me, it was available on Amazon Prime.
It is an interesting love story between the youngest daughter of a traditional family and a young man. Tita is forbidden by her mother to marry Pedro because as the youngest daughter she is required to stay unmarried and care for her mother until she dies. In order to stay near Tita, Pedro marries her sister. Of course she is broken-hearted.
She puts all her emotions into her cooking and in turn the food is filled with her emotions. The diners are affected by some mystical connection to Tita’s emotions. Strange things happen. Some sad, some funny.
In today’s busy world I think we often times forget the power of food. The power that a homecooked meal shared with family and/or friends can hold. It offers a chance for conversation and connection. Real connection and not a quick text message. I even have fallen into the trap of texting rather than actually picking up a telephone. Being in the midst of a major life change, I think the lesson I can learn from Like Water for Chocolate is that it’s important never to give up on family and love.
As a simple math question the answer is yes 2 + 2 = 4 but in terms of life nothing could be further from the truth. When two people join together and create a new life, they become 3. And most families add to that number and become 4, 5, 6 or more.
If your family is close then there is a good chance you will have experienced a family reunion. It is a large party where the progeny of two people all come together. In my family it was the children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren of George and Rose. Over 100 people would gather in the heat of the summer, in a park in Oklahoma City with containers of fried chicken, potato salad, watermelon, homegrown tomatoes, lots and lots of pie, and if we were really lucky someone would make homemade ice cream.
My mother was an only child and I have only one sister, so in my daily life we had a very small family. So on those yearly summer days, to learn I was part of something bigger, a family with many branches helped me feel grounded and reminded me I belonged. Maybe my lineage wasn’t to fabulous wealth or royalty, but it was clear my lineage was one of love, caring and a deep and abiding faith in God.
We no longer go to those reunions. My grandmother and all of her siblings have passed on. The group has now splintered off as those other great aunts and uncles have become great, great grandparents in their own right. So they began having their own reunions. Life goes on. Modern life has taken everyone in their own directions. I think about trying to revive the family reunion even though my own family is small. It would consist of 9 people. But I pray and hope that it will grow as my children and my sister’s children marry and have children of their own. So no, I don’t think 2 + 2 = 4.
If you want to have our own family reunion here are some resources: Family Reunion Planning and Family Reunion Ideas