December 6, 2007
(Page 2 - Previous Page)One Sunday, I'm having lunch at home with my husband and children. I've made Persian rice and a sour meat stew. Wishing to point out his dislike for the stew politely, my younger son remarks that the rice, at least, is good.
"Yes," my daughter says, glaring at her brother for his comment. "And so is the stew." Then she asks me, "When did you learn to make rice?"
I think about it for a moment.
"When I had children," I say, because that's what I believe, what I remember at that moment. It's not until later that I'll remember the summer I was 9, the lesson my mother left me with before she set out on her great adventure.
"How did you learn?" my daughter asks.
"I'm not sure," I answer. "I think I just did what I had seen my mother do when I was young."
And then, out of nowhere, I hear myself say: "But you don't bother yourself with cooking."
Gina B. Nahai is an author and a professor of creative writing at USC. Her new novel, "Caspian Rain," was published this fall. Her column appears monthly in The Journal.
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