Last night Claudia, the chef who owns the restaurant where I work, cooked a huge paella on a fire pit in her backyard. It was the best paella I’ve ever had in my life- not dry, not greasy, not overcooked, just fragrant with saffron and perfect.

My friend Liddy and I got massages before going to the party and got there kind of late. In case I haven’t mentioned it before, one of the best things about LA is how easy it is to get a really great $50 massage on a moments notice. We felt brand new as we walked up the hill to the party. My sister met us there. Claudia’s house is almost like a tree house. The place was buzzing with people- outside on the deck, in the living room watching Hable con Ella, chatting around the dinner table, washing dishes, drinking in the yard or simply sitting around the fire waiting for the second batch of paella. A little boy ran around with a toy rifle wearing a magician’s hat. Liddy poured glasses of pink bubbly. We took in the view, the yard with its chicken coop in one corner and the plum and orange trees. We gobbled fork-fulls of rice, chorizo, and seafood, and talked to our friends high above Glendale Blvd. overlooking the reservoir with the observatory at a distance. It was the kind of night that makes you fall in love with LA and makes you think twice about moving away.

On the drive home I felt a little sad. Claudia, Liddy and I had been talking about dating, about wanting a summer full of sex. Claudia asked me if I had seen Leo lately. And I said what I always say we email but I can’t see him. It’s too hard. I feel like I saved myself from a lifetime of conflict and sorrow but that doesn’t make it any easier. That doesn’t make me love him less. I’m just not in love with him anymore. I’m not really angry at him anymore but when missing him sticks its claws in me it’s really hard to shake it off.