It is actually surprising how much sense this conversation made even before I realized the misunderstanding.
Anita: Do you want me to make you guys halwa (halwa is a traditional sweet)
Me: Yeah! That would be great!
A: Should I make it tomorrow?
R: Oh, we don’t need it right away — maybe you can make it some other time.
A: Ok, so I’ll make it when the kishmish (raisins) come.
R: I think we already have kishmish.
A: No, that’s not what I’m saying. They will come in the middle of December.
R: But we have them now. We can get them anytime. Do you need more?
A: No, listen. When kishmish comes. You know kishmish? In December?
R: (remembering that our roommate Nick is coming back from Mussoorie in the middle of December) Ok, so you’ll wait till Nick comes back and then make it for all of us?
A: No, no! Kishmish. I don’t know how you guys say it. You celebrate it. It’s a holiday.
R: Wait a minute… Christmas??
A: Yes yes!! That’s it! I will make halwa then!!