8 CH8: Love for food

    "There is no love sincerer than the love of food."

    - George Bernard Shaw


    Yesterday was another hectic day for Delilah, where she had been working from morning until late afternoon. She and her colleagues had spent the day inside an office for interview sessions. The interview sessions were tiring, where they had talked with potential hires; questioning and listening. It had taken a toll in their mental stamina.

    A couple of weeks ago, the HR office had received an unexpected resignation from one of their senior employees. Apparently, she had  just accepted a position in the government office.

    Delilah had felt happy, but at the same time, sad, for her senior. Happy because, her senior now has a solid position in the government office. Sad because, she might not be able to talk with her as often as before.

    Ashlynn, the senior employee, was a sweet woman in her mid-thirties. She was a soft spoken woman, despite her energetic and outgoing personality. In appearance, she always wore her dark brown hair in a low neat ponytail. Her huge and expressive doe eyes gave off an attractive yet innocent look. She was a friendly woman, who gets along with most of the employees in the Kang Company.

    She was also one of the best employees in the General Affairs department. Hence, another reason why Delilah was saddened to see a great employee leave the company.

    So, because of this, Delilah also thought it was best for her to join their interview sessions. At the very least, Ashlynn can contribute her opinions on whom was best to replace her position.

    Today was no different from yesterday. Delilah, Firah and Ashlynn had another busy day, conducting interview sessions. One after another, questions were asked and answers were given.

    But Delilah and Ashlynn still could not find someone who seems to be the 'right' person for the job. There were those who seems too arrogant, nervous and even those who seems to be froze up when they started asking questions.

    Another difficult part was when trying to explain to the interviewees what the questions were asking. For example, there was this one interviewee who asked them what 'multi-tasking' means. Delilah had to explain in a different language and dialect, just so the interviewee understands. And one time, Delilah had to create scenarios so that they know what Delilah was asking.

    It had been a mentally tiring day for Delilah and the others. It was quite draining that Delilah had to sit out at two of the interviews. She did not think she could handle asking and listening to more of the sessions.

    It was one hour left before the working hours end. Delilah and the rest of the interviewer panels decided to have a discussion about the interview sessions for that day.

    Aubree was looking through the notes that Delilah and Firah had taken in from the sessions. There was a frown on her face as she concentrated on trying to read the notes. Firah's handwriting was nearly unreadable.

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    Delilah shook her head at Firah, sighing.

    Firah gave her a sheepish smile. "What?" she asked innocently. "My handwriting isn't that bad, is it?"

    Delilah just rolled her eyes, not bothering to answer her question.

    "So, I'd like to say that today was okay, compare to yesterday," Ashlynn spoke up.

    Aubree looked up and asked, "Anyone catches your eye?"

    Ashlynn put a finger on her chin and said thoughtfully, "Well... There are a few. But I wouldn't say that they are the best."

    Delilah crossed her arms over her chest and leaned back against her seat. "What makes you think that they are okay?" she asked, curiousity in her eyes.

    "Well, there is this one girl. I like how she is good in handling customers. At least, that's what she says during the interview. I mean, I bet she won't break if customers suddenly explode on her," Ashlynn said.

    Delilah narrowed her eyes. "And that's it?" she asked. "Well, we'll take note on that. Because there are other aspects that we are looking for, as well. Not just whether she can handle angry customers."

    Firah nodded in agreement. "Yes. We also have to see whether the new hire is a fast learner. We will be able to save more time on training," she commented.

    Aubree sighed as she placed the notes back inside the folder, which holds all the notes on the interview sessions. "Alright then. We'll continue this tomorrow."

    She then looked around at the three women and asked, "Anyone up for some hotpot?"

    Delilah immediately stood up, grabbed her bag and was already at the door and declared, "Okay. Lets go. I'm hungry."

    Aubree, Firah and Ashlynn laughed as they followed Delilah out of the room.

    An hour later, they were in one of the hotpot restaurants. The restaurant is a quaint little shop, with few large tables and chairs inside. Each large tables held a couple of hot pot cookers in it, installed in the middle.

    The four of them were reading the menu, thinking of what to order. Firah decided to share the hot pot with Delilah since they both sat across each other, while Aubree shares with Ashlynn.

    Delilah asked Firah whether she is alright with tom yum soup as their soup base. She has always chosen tom yum soup as her base so she was worried that Firah might not want it. Fortunately, Firah was fine with anything. So, the two of them agreed on tom yum soup as the soup base and added the Chicken Set as their mains.

    Firah looked at Delilah in confused, when she heard Delilah ordering more side dishes. "Isn't Chicken Set enough?" she asked.

    Delilah gave her a 'Are you kidding me?!?' look and said sarcastically, "Uh, no?"

    Firah scratched her head. "But there's a lot of foods in the Chicken Set," she said, still confused.

    Delilah nodded as she pointed more items on the menu. "Yeah, I know. But since we are sharing, I want more. And there's a lot of the dishes that I want which are not included in the set."

    Once Delilah was done ordering her foods, the four women settled down in a comfortable silence. Ashlynn then started to open up a topic, about what her feelings are when it comes to the new job. They also talked about their mutual friends and had a little gossip.

    A few minutes later, a waiter came and placed their soups on the cookers. Firah and Delilah have chosen the red tom yum soup base, whereas Aubree and Ashlynn have chosen the chicken soup base. There are actually two kinds of soup bases for tom yum, which are the white tom yum and the red tom yum. And since Delilah liked spicy foods, she had opted for the red tom yum.

    The smell of fresh and fragrant spices and herbs hit her nose when the soup was placed in front of Delilah. Added with the lemongrass, it gave out a distinct citrusy fragrance with touch of botanical fine herbs. It stimulates Delilah's sense of smell and it felt relaxing.

    Delilah scooped out some soup onto her bowl and have a sip.

    The bubbling soup simmers smoothly as it cooked the ingredients inside, enveloping everything inside a reddish orange blanket. The broth tasted earthy and a little bit spicy from the cut chillies that were bursting out flakes inside. The subtle taste of lime and cilantro felt lemony as it engulfed Delilah together with the warm temperature of broth. The strong and sharp tastes of the spices pricked at Delilah's senses as she scooped more soup with some fish balls and vegetables in her bowl.

    Delilah ate her foods with relish, her eyes sparkled with happiness.

    Ashlynn giggled as she watched Delilah eats. "There's no one who loves food more than Delilah."

    Delilah shrugged. "There's no better love than love for food. Especially DEE-licious foods."
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