When I was very young, stress that very young, in 1973, but already married, seperated, and had lived with the lesbian, (okay if they had only told me,) junkies (never okay), I lived in a duplex tripledecker in Cambridge and worked in a luxe the year before store on Boylston Street in Boston.
Visa had begun telephone approval ‘s for new credit cards, and my boss had me pretend that I was another salesperson as I phoned in my own information. Thirteen minutes later I had $250 worth of credit.
The day after my card arrived in the mail was a holiday. I bought my first hard cover book, and took two of my roommates out to dinner at a Chinese restaurant.
Jasmin and Jagrati, my best friends in Cambridge, were were half East Indian Hindu and Half Turkish Muslim. Their parents had met when living at University House while in grad school at Columbia. Mr. and Mrs. Singh’s parents didn’t speak to them until the girls were born. Mrs. Singh’s parents were Turkish elite while Mr Singh came from the second lowest caste and had been a follower and disciple of Ghandi’s.
I always thought that was the most romantic story; and I adored my new friends. Like Shelby before and Lucia later, Jasmin and I began talking and couldn’t stop. My close friendships seem to begin a lot like falling in love does without the sexual tension. Sometimes that’s needed.
So I took them to a Chinese restaurant on the corner of Mass Ave near Harvard Square; it’s the only Chinese restaurant I have ever been at the bar in, except the luxe ones. I might have taken our five more roommates out, also. That sounds like me.
When we arrived home, my parents called; they sounded a bit strange, but I was used to that:
“Put on the TV.”
We had my nine inch black & white set that traveled from place to place with me. I told somebody to put on the TV.
The Yom Kippur War had begun. I had to work the next day so it hadn’t been worth going home. I bought books; I ate. I not only ate, I ate pork. I began a war.
I felt so guilty about this that every year since I have been with my family for at least part of the holiday. I am half Ashkanzi Jew/half Irish Catholic by birth; all Ashkanzi Jew by adoption and choice. The guilt gene works overtime.