One of my apartment mates walked in today, talking in a mix of English and Cantonese about herbal soup. Her mom was on the other end of the line, directing her towards the freezer and then the sink: “Wait, let me video call you…I defrost the chicken like this? Like, just put it under hot water? Okay, now what else do I add to the pot? How long will it take?” My roommate emerged from our double, joining my apartment mate in the kitchen. “Oh, my mom’s made this before, too. Looks good.”
I continued clicking through my chemistry homework with a smile. Many of my evenings hold similar conversations with my own mom: “How much jeera powder should I use in this? Will my khichdi last another couple days? Do I really need rasam powder to make rasam?” Every time, she laughs at how much I overthink my food. “It’s easy, Arya. Don’t worry, you’ll figure it out.”
Hermit crabs are my friends.
I will miss this, I really will.
Sitting outside on my deck writing, laptop warm against my thighs and notebook pressing into the crook of my elbow. My dog sits near me, chewing on a leaf or something (as he does) as a gentle breeze, barely able to even be called a breeze, touches my shoulder and the tips of the trees’ leaves. I can hear the crickets starting to chirp through my headphones– there’s was a heat stroke in the Bay Area this weekend and the last of it seems to be ebbing away now. The fog is finally starting to roll back in over the mountains to cool down the air, saving my breath.