I awoke early as usual, started the coffee, and went in to check emails. There was one from The College Boy, discussing his car. The car that he has not driven in six months. How can any American college boy go six months without driving his car?! Funny, I tell you.
This afternoon daughter Gillian spent an enormous amount of time tutoring me on how to download Shakespeare from Amazon to iTunes, and consequently to my disc-to-burn. The tutelage took more time than either of us would have liked. But it is done and I have learned. Just after we finished, she had a letter to mail. How do we send letters out here in rural Kansas? I had to explain to her: "Go out to the mailbox, put the letter in, and raise the red flag so the postman knows there's a letter in there."
So simple, and yet...what she was telling me was probably equally as simple to her. Funny generational differences.
She leaves tomorrow for parts west, which will ultimately place her at points east: Central China. This week has been an ordeal of organization for her: moving from her grad school apartment, depositing all her worldly possessions here, and four days later, heading to Central China for the summer. And - tack on to that: arriving back in the States five days before her sister's wedding, for which she is the Maid of Honor. So, dear Gillian, pack for the unknown of China, but please pack a dress and heels and plan for a rehearsal dinner and wedding while you're at it. Oh, the logistics! Funny week of planning and re-thinking and crossing off lists, and laughs in between.
I have a dear friend who has had a pet Chihuahua for (what seems to me) a million years. She loves her all her dogs, but this particular pet, Lola, is what I would term a "problem child". Besides - Lola has always hated me. HATED. I am afraid of small dogs, and I know that pup honed in on my fear early on in her puppy years. We moved away from my dear friend and her family eleven years ago, and yet that dog has always known it was me who was calling, and she would BARK BARK BARK GROWL BARK anytime I called.
Well. Today my friend called. Her Chihuahua had died. In her arms, while they were on vacation in Colorado. That is very sad. Anyone who has loved a pet knows the sadness in the death of said pet. I assumed they would bury Lola out there in Colorado, but apparently the ground is too rocky (Rocky Mountains??) to dig a Chihuahua grave, and so they put Lola in the freezer yesterday so that she can travel back to Oklahoma with them, and that will be her final resting place. Now. I will not make light of the fact that the dog that has barked over the phone at me for eleven years and has scared me at every meeting which has taken place between us, is now in a freezer, awaiting transport to better soil.
I did ask my dear friend, though, what her other two dogs must think as they make the drive back to Oklahoma, as to why their canine playmate is in a cooler in the back seat? I bet those two pups don't misbehave one iota on the drive home.
And then, there are weeds...
The summer we moved to this property was a dried-out, crispy, heat-laden, grasshopper-ridden summer. It was not a pleasant oasis in my mind's eye, trying to make a home out here in the middle of desert, dust-storm nowhere. One day still stays in my memory - a man in an official county pick-up truck stopped by to tell me that the purple thistle growing out in our pasture (read: it had been our pasture for approximately 20 days) was a Noxious Weed in Kansas, and we could get fined for having it in our pasture. I immediately eradicated it (i.e., cut it), and that was that.
But I have to tell you, purple thistle flowers are really pretty things. It's one of those quandary things, like poison ivy and mosquitoes: Why did God create them?
I give you, from the pasture-to-our-kitchen:
From noxious weeds to college boys riding bikes, it was a fun, funny day.