yours, tiramisu

my disappointment knows no bounds

I went to a friend's (parents') housewarming on Sunday morning. Since most of our parents moved to my hometown for the education system, now that we've graduated and moved out many parents are starting to buy houses in more remote areas to benefit from lower taxes and to cash out on their houses here. My parents have thought about doing the same, and I understand why they would want to, but I've always resisted it. I don't want to live another hour further from the city, and I want to be able to visit my friends the few times a year they do come home. I'm also quite emotionally attached to the house I grew up in; I feel so comfortable in it I can get around with my eyes closed. Besides, if we got a bigger house, what would we even do with all that space?

As I understand, the housewarming was held in traditional Indian fashion and started with a puja (or prayer) at daybreak. (Which I didn't attend, for obvious reasons.) When I arrived around noon, the house was already decked out with elaborate decorations of bright orange marigolds, deep green and yellow coverings, and bronze statues of Hindu gods in varying sizes. The altar in the living room took my breath away with its sheer size and variety. There was so much to take in: lit candles, artistic depictions of the gods being honored, a rainbow of tropical fruit, and all sorts of prepared Indian treats. It was my first time seeing anything of the sort in a home, and I was very impressed at the diligence with which the Indian families I've seen keep up with their traditions. I don't know if it's just my limited circle but the Chinese families I know don't do anything nearly as elaborate at this. (Come to think of it, we hardly do anything at all...)

yours, tiramisú

The party went more or less as you might expect it to. After greeting the hosts and giving them a gift, I found my friends and we played board games in a corner, doing our best to stay out of the way of the Indian aunties and uncles who were singing songs, preparing food, and taking pictures.

While we chatted, the conversation wandered to a friend that I'd cut out recently (for just ... being a bad friend), and how my other friends had done the same independently around the same time, for different reasons. They told me how, on multiple occasions, he'd assaulted women they knew while drunk at parties and showed no sincere regret or remorse for his actions. They gave him multiple chances to apologize and finally cut him off when they had enough of his antics. To say I'm disgusted... would be an understatement. I'm furious, and above all, disappointed beyond belief. In him, of course, but also a little bit in myself. How could I once have considered someone like this a friend? Why was I surprised to learn this news? Was there any way I could have known? And yes, we can cut him out and remove him from our lives, but what if he continues this behavior? Are we doing enough? What else we can do?

(Oh, and if you're the person I'm talking about, don't bother reaching out to me because I won't respond. Spare your apologies for the women instead.)

#culture #english #journal #life