Everyone has to eat. We need food to fuel our bodies. After all, food is a fundamental component to our physical health. As it turns out, eating together is fundamental to our emotional well-being too. There is power in sharing a meal. So, of course, one of my favorite things about Ziyada is lunch time. Daily, our cook, Pushpa (pictured below), dishes out plates full of steaming rice and lentils, and spicy stewed vegetables. It gives us all much needed physical energy for the work we do, and, as we eat together, something else happens—we build connections.
We tell funny stories of the embarrassing things our children tell their teachers on zoom calls, and share where we bought our latest outfit and the deals we got at the market. We lament the brutality of the never-ending summer weather. We shoot the breeze. We rest. We decompress. Sometimes, someone will bring a little extra treat from home that we pass around, joyfully sharing bits of chutney and homemade sweets with one another.
Lunch time lightens the office mood, shifts the relational dynamic, and strengthens our teams’ bonds. It is the best, and it is also really tasty! Come visit us sometime. Pushpa will happily make a little extra for you!