The past two days I’ve been miserably confined to the bed or the couch, struck down by either a stomach bug or mild food poisoning (You’ve got a weak stomach, my mother says on the phone from San Francisco, distracted and not really giving a fuck, we both do. Are you pregnant? OK, we’re going to Muir Woods. I’ll text you later). It is painfully beautiful in Los Angeles, eighty degrees and impossibly sunny. I want to go for a walk or a hike but I haven’t eaten anything except a banana in 36 hours and I know that would only get me so far.
My neighbor waters the plants outside my apartment once a week. She wears a straw visor, black shorts, a white tee shirt. She gets my windows wet and she waters all the plants for far too long, a silly amount of water. She waters plants that don’t need water. She waters the leaves of trees. She waters the day after it rains.
She talks to me a lot about my cat. How come you don’t leave the window open for him? How come you don’t take him outside on a leash? How come you don’t buy him a pet door? I try and leave only when she is not outside. Otherwise I’m stuck for hours.
On Sunday I leave for San Francisco for just a couple nights. Until then—finishing a round of edits for my second book and trying to land on something to eat that doesn’t make me feel nauseous.
I used to be very interesting, my neighbor says to someone outside my window.
Sometimes I feel the same way.
photographs taken in my apartment in Los Angeles.