Every time Else made soup, she would search inside herself. As she stirred, she would pour the love she had inside her into the soup.
Every day, Else would cook her soup. Her family would sit around her scrubbed table, talking and laughing, eating the steaming spoonfuls that would nurture as well as nourish them. They grew up, happy and healthy.
It was Hannah who noticed the change in Else first of all.
“Granny looks so pale,” the young woman observed. “She seems to be fading away.”
No one else seemed to accept it. No one else seemed to recognise what Hannah could see.
So Hannah grabbed her largest pan and began to cook. She put in the ingredients she could remember her granny using. It bubbled on the stove whilst she fretted about doing the soup right. Eventually, she plucked up the courage to taste a little of the soup.
Something was wrong. As she let the soup run across her tongue, Hannah let herself imagine the soup Else made. Something was missing. Instinctively, she grabbed a wooden spoon and stirred. As she stirred, she thought of her family and what Else meant to them. Hannah closed her eyes and felt the love for her family. She willed the love down the spoon and into the bubbling soup. Nervously, she tasted the soup again.
Later that day, the family sat around the table. As always, everyone tucked into Else’s soup. Just as she was about to take a spoonful herself, Else found herself without a bowl. With a shy smile, Hannah placed a new helping in front of her grandmother.
“This is for you, Gran ,” she said.
Else tried a little of the soup. As she swallowed, a glow seemed to spread across her face. Almost instantly, she appeared to become properly nourished again.
“Ah,” she said, smiling at Hannah. “You remembered to add the love…”