Chapters 3-5 Summary
Biju, the cook's son, was living in New York City, working at various restaurants and cafes. He often wrote home to his father, the news in his letters basically the same except for the names of the restaurants. After work, the other Indian men with whom Biju was employed often sought out prostitutes. Biju always made excuses for not joining them. He would tell them the weather was too hot. Other times, he told them it was too cold. He also warned the men that the prostitutes were dirty and could give them diseases. The men, much older than Biju, who was only nineteen, told him that they did not care. One day, the manager where Biju worked told him and the other men that he had to let them go. He had been warned that there was to be a crackdown on illegal immigrants. The loss of this job was little different from any of the others that Biju had witnessed through the year.
Biju's father answered his son's letters, making the correspondence simple and short, not wanting to betray his lack of education. The cook warned his son not to lend anyone money and to be careful whom he chose for friends. If the boy had any questions, he should ask Nandu, another man from their village who had emigrated to New York.
The cook and Sai explored the world on an inflatable globe that they had sent for from an ad they found in a National Geographic magazine. They marked where Biju lived and compared it to where they were. Sai explained to the cook why, when it was morning in India, it was night in New York. The cook thought it was strange that the sun should shine first on India and then America each day, making India appear too much more important than the States for an hour that India did not deserve.
Sai's attachment to the cook had begun the first day she arrived at her grandfather's home. She had previously been living at the boarding school, St. Augustine's, in Dehra Dun. The day she arrived by taxi at the house, it was the...
(The entire section is 561 words.)