The sky was overcast like never before in Colorado. And then it started to rain, heavily at first and continuous, light, rhythmic drizzle later on. It appeared to be the perfect time to drink hot chocolate and a curl up with a book. I downloaded “ And the Mountains Echoed”; and started the journey with Pari. I kept reading through the day, glancing outside the window once a while to see if the rain had stopped.
For almost a week, the rains kept lashing on now, softly falling then and making us all aware how powerful and sometimes unforgiving Mother Nature is. The waterways filled and then overflowed, the creeks spilled over and the rivers raged. The news grew increasingly alarming. Towns had been cut off from the rest of the state and the rain continued to fall. Flash Flood warning messages started to flash on my mobile screen and then one of the windows in the basement filled up with water. We got to work with a wet Vac and pumped the water out. And then did it again a couple of hours later and again a day later.
We spent days praying for friends who had been asked to take shelter and stay where they were as the roads were impassable. We kept hoping to get a word from them somehow. And we waited for their news as we watched news about the devastation that had struck.
A few days later, the rain stopped. Rescue operations began with full force and tales of heroism started to float in. More than 700 people were airlifted to safer places along with their pets. Tales of human resilience, of faith and bravery and of communities coming together to salvage and rebuild gladdened our hearts. And our friends called to let us know they were safe. Two days ago, the news we had been hoping and praying for, came in. All the people who were missing, were accounted for and had reached safety.
Colorado towns that faced the worst of the disaster, will never look the same again and the people won’t be the same as before. Life goes on while you are left to pick up pieces.
I finally finished reading the book. I loved it and I hated it at the same time, within the same thought. While I pondered over the book once more in my thoughts, I decided to spread some cheer by cooking a meal for my friends who had just been through a very tough time in their life. And the food from Afghanistan was resonating within me – because of the book, because of the life portrayed in the book and what was going on around me while I was reading it and because it simply is a soul satisfying cuisine.
I made the Borani Banjan as one of the dishes to bring to my friends. On the surface it is simply eggplants layered with tomatoes and yogurt. But the layers work magic. Try it for yourself.