Once Henry painted a picture of a tomato red sunset but Nicole pointed out that all the clouds he drew were thin and parallel. “Looks like spaghetti,” as she put it. It was a funny comment to them and they made a sort of game out of it. Every once in awhile, they would look up at the sky and try to cook which kind of pasta the clouds looked like. An overcast sky was a giant lasagna pasta. A sky with numerous puffy clouds were stuffed pastas like raviolis or tortellinis. Usually the clouds didn’t form the shapes of any particular pasta so they just made whatever they had in their houses that looked close enough.
On an evening when wispy cirrus clouds streaked across the sky overhead Nicole said, “Let’s make spaghettis.”
They went to the kitchen. Nicole climbed up to the counter to reach the box of noodles. Henry filled a pan at the sink. He made sure to fill up right to the halfway line. “I always forget, do you salt the water before or after you cook the pasta?” asked Nicole.
“Before. Why would you put it in after if you’re just going to take the water out?” Henry added some salt and put the pan on the stove. He clicked the stove on.
“Bad news,” said Nicole, “We don’t have any spaghetti pastas.”
“You should have told me before I started.”
“You did it before I could check. Do you care what kind of pasta we have?”
“I guess it doesn’t matter.”
Nicole opened a bag of instant ramen, threw out the soup base, and put the noodles into the water. “What are you doing? The water hasn’t boiled yet. I just put it on,” said Henry. Nicole got a skimmer and fished out the wet dry noodles. She put them on the counter.
They watched the pan together. Then one of them would get bored and go into the other room and watch TV or check their phone. Nicole’s cousin saw them wander in and out of various rooms and recognized the pattern of movement. “Making pasta?” she asked.
“Yes,” said Nicole.
When the water boiled, Nicole picked up the brick of noodle from its puddle on the counter and plopped it in. A speck of hot water stung the back of Henry’s hand and he hissed. “Be careful!” Nicole didn’t notice. She broke the noodles apart with a fork.
“What are you putting on yours?”
“I don’t know. Tomato sauce?”
“We don’t have any.”
“I was going to put on chocolate chips or something else sweet.”
“Why? That sounds gross.”
“I think it will be fun. And I mean, noodles don’t really taste like anything anyways. It doesn’t matter what you put on them.”
“Don’t worry. I’ll let you have some. It’ll be good.”
Neither of them finished their spaghettis. It didn’t matter to them they just liked making it.