Erlinda and I drove across Lake Pontchartrain to New Orleans yesterday for me to see my yoga therapist and for both of us to go grocery shopping afterwards. I was in therapy for relief from anxiety that I attribute to the stress of evacuating for Hurricane Ida.

We followed my Waze app downtown and parked at a meter six blocks from my therapist’s 400 Poydras Tower office. As we walked to my appointment, we passed several upscale restaurants, their outdoor tables set with tasteful silver and linen. A trio of casually-dressed businessmen passed us on the sidewalk followed by six young women in workout clothes.

While I went to my session on the 19th floor of the skyscraper, Erlinda sat in the waiting room reading an article in Psychology Today titled “Don’t Argue with People Who Believe Their Own Lies.”

After my session, we drove across the river to Hong Kong Market, a Vietnamese grocery store in Gretna where Erlinda shops for mung bean noodles, bangus (milkfish), Asian vegetables, and Vietnamese desserts.

Before we left the market, I ordered a sardine sandwich at the deli counter. The sandwich resembled a Vietnamese banh mi except that it came on a soft po’ boy loaf as opposed to a banh mi’s hot, crispy baguette.

The Hong Kong Market’s sandwich lady used the traditional Ligo brand of sardines canned in spicy tomato sauce. She microwaved the sardines briefly and arranged them on a po’ boy loaf. To this she added pickled carrots daikon radish, cilantro, a long slice of cucumber, and sriracha hot sauce.

I ate the sandwich, still warm in its paper bag, in the car. Having loading the car with dry noodles, frozen fish, and green gelatinous desserts, we soared back over the river bridge and out along the causeway toward home.

That night, I went to bed at 9:00, woke up at 3:30, and couldn’t go back to sleep. Rather than take a sleeping pill, I did my yoga therapy practice. I may have felt like a zombie the rest of the day, but I wasn’t anxious.

2 thoughts on “Sardines

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