"We're going to have a great time, okay? And make some awesome food, am I right?" The instructor, a petite blonde woman, beamed out over her captive audience. She wore a sturdy apron over her t-shirt and jeans, and as she spoke she whipped her long hair up into a ponytail. Planting her hands on her hips she continued, "Why don't we go around the room and say our names and favorite dishes?"
Sati tried to pay close attention as the men and women around her announced strange names and stranger meals. My English is terrible, she fretted. I cannot understand half of what they are saying. She was trying to puzzle out how to make a loaf out of meat when she realized everyone was staring at her.
"Oh! I am Sati Chandra," she strained to make her voice audible over the shuffling of feet and clearing of throats. "I like to make ..." Her mind blanked. "Ah. I like -"
"O.M.G., if you say 'chutney' you will totally steal my answer!" A long-legged beauty, who looked as if she had stepped straight off a Bollywood movie poster, dropped her bag beside Sati's workstation. "So sorry I'm late. I couldn't find a place to park, like, anywhere. Also, my name's Pooja Shertukde. Hi!" Her grin at once encompassed the entire class and singled each of them out as her particular friend.
Word count: ~25,000. Slowly but surely.