New York International

I had such an interesting day that I can’t help but share it. I’m also inspired because many of my friends, in India mostly, said that I haven’t posted in forever. So here’s a post. I had quite an international day. My friend, an old summer roommate who is Taiwanese via Canada, and I went to get Trinidadian food in my neighborhood. I love this place and will take most people there. I sat and worked on my book (yes, slowly but surely it will happen) and then on my way home, got stuck in my lobby. My downstairs neighbor was having a food sale in the lobby. There was music, the neighbors, and food. I couldn’t not get a plate.I’m not sure where in the West Indies she’s from. The food smelled so good. I had been smelling it all morning as I was going in and out of the building. We got to talking, because I’ll use anything as an excuse to meet new people. I met a few of the people from the building, got my food, and went upstairs and got ready for an event I had to go to. On my way down, the same women noticed that I looked all dressed up, we spoke for a minute and I told them it was dangerous that I knew she lived there and could make that food. We joked around a bit, and I felt so good. I love the feeling of being a part of a community. Although I know one man who lives downstairs, who I run into often as he walks his dog, I don’t know too many other people. This made me so happy.

On my way home, on the train (which took about 20 minutes to arrive) I heard a man speaking to his two daughters in Hindi. I was eaves dropping, because I love listening and seeing which parts of a conversation I can understand, and then had to say something. I spoke with the father for a bit and then his daughters, looking a little skeptical, started talking to him again. He told them I could speak to them too and then a whole new world opened for them. They kept saying they were going to come to my house. They babbled on about little things. His family is split between Delhi and Lahore. I thought it was an interesting combination. He said he was speaking to them in Urdu, which confused me because I didn’t realize how similar it was, nor that I would understand so much. It was a lovely train ride. The girls were so sweet.

The party was still going on when I got home. Jennifer, so I learned her name is, brought me in to meet her family in her apartment. Her son I had met at the mural party earlier in the evening. There is a beautiful mural outside of the Prospect Park stop of the train. I had the pleasure of meeting the artist, Kwami, at a cafe that I like to go to in the neighborhood, over the summer. I spoke about the the food party in my lobby, and Jennifer’s son was there. Small world. Kwami made him get him some food. It was lovely. As Jennifer was introducing me to her family, her son waved at me like an old friend. I can’t say enough how I love this sense of community. Jennifer and I are going to exchange recipes. I’m going to make her some dal palak. Her sister and daughter and I spoke briefly about eating with your hands. I told them how I’m used to it. That made them happy. It made me happy too.

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