A couple of years ago I splashed out and bought a pretty fancy “bento” lunch box for my son Theo at the Japanese American National Museum gift store in LA’s Little Tokyo. He already had a couple of lunch boxes, but for a long time now, I have been having trouble getting Theo to eat what I give him for lunch – cooked food, sandwiches, pita bread and hummus come home half eaten or completely untouched. So, I had the idea that perhaps if the lunch box were cool enough, maybe he’d eat the contents. But it didn’t work that way, and the lunchbox has been sitting in one of the kitchen cupboards looking lovely but very unfulfilled. So, I brought it out in the hope of finding just the right person to give it to.
It’s blue on the outside and purple inside. This may have been why I liked the box so much but it didn’t really appeal to Theo. So, I kept it on the kitchen countertop waiting for the right person to give it to. Today, Theo’s friend Rodrigo came over for a play date. He’s not into purple either, but his grandmother and his older sister Gaby came to the door too. Gaby is a very sweet 12-year old with huge brown eyes and a beautiful broad smile. She’s in middle school is a smart, hard-working student and loves animals. Whenever her family drops Rodrigo off or picks him up, she loves to come in and visit with our cats, and when she’s petting them her eyes and smile get even bigger. She is also a very artistic girl and her mother has been taking her to art classes for particularly gifted kids every Saturday for the past few years. That’s where she usually is when Rodrigo has a play date with Theo. Today, however, she was off to a play date with a friend herself. Because she is so artistic, I thought she might like the lunchbox, so when she was leaving I offered it to her. She smiled her big smile and thanked me, saying she’d use it for sure and disappeared down the front steps with her grandmother, looking particularly cute and fashionable in her skinny pants and pretty cotton blouse, a lovely young girl on the brink of her teen years.